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Banc of America Securities Healthcare Conference In Brief

This article was originally published in The Gray Sheet

Executive Summary

Boston Scientific: Firm says it will announce a string of strategic investments in the second half of the year, including a deal related to intravascular ultrasound (IVUS) imaging technology. "In the second and third quarter you will hear of a plethora of new alliances and acquisitions that we are really already close to accomplishing," CFO Larry Best tells investors during an April 3 presentation in Las Vegas. Later this year, Boston Scientific will unveil new technology to move IVUS into the hands of more "mainstream" cardiologists in the cath lab, giving them enhanced imaging and the more precise placement of stents in blood vessels. Separately, Boston Scientific believes that an unfavorable verdict regarding its litigation with Cook over the licensing of paclitaxel-application technology to Guidant would not significantly hurt the firm's competitive prospects in the drug-eluting stent arena. "If it goes our way, great, if it doesn't go our way, there is not a lot of downside," Best comments. Regarding Guidant's recent licensing agreement with Novartis for its everolimus compound, Boston Scientific says that it could have licensed the compound first, eventually deciding against it. "Novartis shopped around a Rapamycin-like drug, we had the perfect opportunity to get that as another compound and we chose not to for a lot of reasons," Best says. The exec cites the firm's confidence in paclitaxel, potential intellectual property issues, and the fact that the drug is not approved anywhere in the world as the reasons for passing on the compound...

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