Brainstorm Health: Brainstorm Health, Alexa for Health Care, Novartis Sues Amgen

Hello readers, I’m about to take off on a flight following two amazing days at Fortune‘s Brainstorm Health conference, so we’ll have to keep things short today unfortunately (I’ll give you the full rundown soon enough, I promise). In the meantime I highly encourage you to my colleague Andrew Nusca’s writeup of our confab’s closing panel, a conversation between co-chair Arianna Huffington and Edie Falco, the award-winning Sopranos actress and cancer survivor. Falco’s staying mantra? Maintaining an “attitude of gratitude.” Back with you (with much more) tomorrow. Read on for the day’s news. DIGITAL HEALTH Alexa, can…

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Brainstorm Health: Aetna CEO on CVS Deal, Amazon Pharmacy, Halloween Candy

Yesterday’s report by the Wall Street Journal that CVS Health was “in talks” to buy health insurer Aetna sent ripples through much of the healthcare realm. The combination of CVS Health, the seventh-biggest company in the U.S. by revenue, with Aetna (No. 43 on the Fortune 500) would, if it were to go through, create a corporate behemoth with $240 billion in annual revenue across a wide swath of the healthcare continuum, from retail pharmacy and benefit management to insurance. As a rule, any creation of a new behemoth generates buzz. But this time, there has been equally…

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Brainstorm Health Daily: February 15, 2017

Merck is the latest company to weather bad news in the Alzheimer’s drug race, halting a late-stage trial yesterday in an experimental amyloid-targeting candidate called verubecestat after a data monitoring committee said there was “virtually no chance of finding a positive clinical effect,” Reuters reported. Merck shares got hammered in after-hours trading Tuesday evening and during the early morning rush, but had fully recovered by mid-morning. (The stock is actually at a 52-week high now.) Who knows? Maybe savvy traders expected the rotten news. After all, Merck simply joins a…

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