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Pfizer’s COVID cash pile opens opportunities for deals

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Investors on Tuesday hope to learn Pfizer Inc’s plans for what could be a once-in-a-generation cash infusion from COVID-19 treatments and vaccines in 2022, with some looking for the drugmaker to spend on deals.

Pfizer’s 2021 sales are expected to top $80 billion – its highest ever annual figure, according to Chief Executive Albert Bourla. Analysts expect revenue to top $100 billion in 2022 as production of Pfizer’s oral antiviral treatment Paxlovid picks up.

The 173-year-old U.S. drugmaker expects 2021 sales of $36 billion and another $29 billion in 2022 just for its COVID-19 vaccine developed with Germany’s BioNTech SE.

Pfizer has said it books profit in the high 20s percent of vaccine revenue.

Expectations are also high for Paxlovid, which is being used in the United States and has been authorized in Canada, UK and Europe.

Analysts on average have forecast sales of nearly $23 billion this year. The U.S. purchase contract alone – for just one sixth of Pfizer’s expected 2022 production of 120 million Paxlovid courses – topped $10 billion.

Profits from the drug are expected to be high.

“What are they actually going to do with all this cash?” said Mizuho analyst Vamil Divan, adding that Pfizer may need to bring in new experimental drugs to replace sales from those losing patent protection in the next few years.

“Is future growth coming from the vaccine and Paxlovid, or are they buying things to boost their pipeline? I think we want to see them do more things like that to build their pipeline,” Divan said.

Pfizer’s profit surge comes at an opportune time for deals. The Nasdaq biotechnology index is down more than 21% in the past 12 months.

“There was very little M&A in biotech last year and that’s one of the things that held the sector back. Biotech investors expect and are hoping that it picks up this year, and we think Pfizer is going to be a major driver of M&A,” said healthcare investor Brad Loncar.

In 2021, Pfizer bought Arena Pharmaceuticals Inc for $6.7 billion in cash and cancer drug developer Trillium Therapeutics for $2.3 billion.

Pfizer also could take other steps to reward shareholders.

“They’ve had such a flood of money come in that there might be a component of buybacks or dividend to Pfizer’s capital deployment, but the main event will be M&A,” Loncar said.

Pfizer’s dividend yield of roughly 3% compares favorably to the nearly 2% dividend yield for the Dow Jones industrial average index.

Pfizer’s shares have risen over 50% in the past 12 months, outperforming the 17% gain for the S&P 500 index in the same time period. Prior to the pandemic, Pfizer’s shares traded in a range below $44 for several years.

 

(Reporting by Manas Mishra in Bengaluru and Michael Erman in New Jersey; editing by Caroline Humer and Bill Berkrot)

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Toronto Public Health hosting pop-up COVID-19 vaccination clinics throughout Canada Day weekend – Toronto.com

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Toronto Public Health continues to host summer pop-up vaccination clinics across the city in partnership with Toronto’s Canada Day festivals and special events. This is part of Team Toronto’s continued efforts to bring COVID-19 vaccination opportunities to places residents live, work and play.

“As people gather to celebrate Canada Day across the city, Team Toronto will be out helping residents get vaccinated against COVID-19 and keep their vaccinations up to date,” said Mayor John Tory. “We have made such progress thanks to our world-leading vaccination efforts, and that’s why we’re continuing to work throughout this holiday and into the summer to help deliver vaccine doses.”

TPH will host the following vaccination clinics in early July:

• High Park Canada Day Festival at High Park, 1873 Bloor St. W., Friday, July 1, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

• East York Canada Day Festival at Stan Wadlow Park. 373 Cedarvale Ave., Friday, July 1, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

• Canada Day event at Mel Lastman Square, 5100 Yonge St. Friday, July 1, 2 to 7 p.m.

• CIMA Mayor’s Cricket Trophy event at Sunnybrook Park, 1132 Leslie St. Saturday, July 2, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

• Lakeshore Ribfest at 1 Colonel Samuel Smith Park Dr. Saturday July 2 and Sunday, July 3, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

• Afrofest at Woodbine Park, 1695 Queen St. E. Saturday, July 9 and Sunday, July 10, 1 to 7:30 p.m.

• Dragon Boat Challenge (GWN Sport Regatta) at Marilyn Bell Park, 1095 Lakeshore Blvd. W. Saturday July 9, 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

These family-friendly and youth-friendly clinics will provide first, second, third, fourth and children’s COVID-19 doses to eligible residents age five and up on a walk-in basis, with no appointment or health card required. Pfizer and Moderna vaccines will be offered by TPH nurses, who will also answer COVID-19 and vaccine-related questions.

Residents can continue to get vaccinated at city-run immunization clinics, primary care offices and more than 525 pharmacies. A full list of clinic locations and hours is available on the City’s COVID-19: Where to Get Vaccinated webpage.

As of Monday, July 4, the city-run immunization clinic at Metro Hall will operate Monday to Friday noon to 6 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Residents can find a pharmacy offering COVID-19 vaccination by using the Government of Ontario’s COVID-19 pharmacy vaccine locations webpage.

All eligible residents are encouraged to get their third and fourth dose as soon as possible. As with vaccines for other diseases, people are protected best when they stay up to date. COVID-19 vaccines have been scientifically proven to lower the risk of illness, hospitalization and death while protecting oneself, loved ones and the community, and residents with three doses had the lowest rates of hospitalization, ICU and death over any other level of vaccination.

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Style File: Smart sunscreens – Montreal Gazette

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Sunscreen is always a good idea.

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Skin cancers are the most common forms of cancer in Canada, according to Statistics Canada. And severe sunburns are noted as “an important risk factor for melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancers,” according to the agency.

With this in mind, it’s important to slather, smooth, spray — or whatever your chosen format of sun protection may be — this summer.

Here are four smart sunscreen options to consider adding to your daily sun-protection plan:

Tint time

From the French brand La Roche-Posay, this “ultralight” sunscreen formula features a universal tint to match most skin tones. See you later, face makeup. The Anthelios Mineral Tinted Ultra Fluid boasts a sun protection factor (that’s the SPF) of 50, thanks to 100 per cent mineral filters. Suitable for sensitive skin, the broad-spectrum sunscreen — it blocks both UVA and UVB rays, is sweat resistant and water resistant for up to 40 minutes.

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$35.95 | Shoppers Drug Mart, Laroche-posay.ca

Double duty

This advanced sunscreen formula from Shiseido acts as a moisturizer, sunscreen and face primer all-in-one formula. The Urban Environment Oil-Free Sunscreen has an SPF of 42 and features skin-loving ingredients such as spirulina and hyaluronic acid to hydrate and smooth skin while broad-spectrum UV filters protect against ultraviolet rays.

$45 | Sephora, Shiseido.com

Smooth operator

Perfect for those who struggle with acne, this Clear as Day SPF 46 from the brand Starface is vegan and cruelty-free, while also being oil-free and non-comedogenic. The fragrance-free formula features a unique gel texture and is completely clear so there’s no fear of a white cast on skin. Water resistant for up to 80 minutes, so you can spend a little extra time splish-splashing about.

$32 | Starfaceworld.ca

All-over option

Sun protection doesn’t stop at the face, neck and décolletage. Introduce head-to-toe coverage to your summer routine with the Garnier Ombrelle Sensitive Expert Body Lotion SPF 60. The hypoallergenic sunscreen formula features broad-spectrum coverage, is fragrance-free, dermatologist-tested, non-comedogenic and water resistant for up to 80 minutes. Plus, the lotion formula is easy to apply, and absorbs quickly.

$24.99 | London Drugs, Londondrugs.com

Aharris@postmedia.com

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Mysterious staggering disease in cats down to previously unknown virus – New Scientist

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A previously unknown rustrela virus might be the cause of a staggering disease that affects cats in some parts of Europe



Life



1 July 2022

Pet cats in some parts of Europe can sometimes develop a mysterious disease

Laurie 4593/Shutterstock

The cause of a brain disease in cats that makes them develop symptoms such as staggering is a previously unknown virus, a study suggests. The pathogen is a rustrela virus and is probably carried by wood mice.

The findings show that rustrela viruses are more diverse and widespread than previously thought, according to Kaspar Matiasek at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich and his colleagues. They write that the viruses might cause neurological diseases in other mammals …

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