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October 1, 2012
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WellPoint Inc. is likely to name an outsider as its next CEO, according to interviews with former executives and directors of the Indianapolis-based health insurance company. The person mentioned most often as a likely successor to ousted CEO Angela Braly is David Snow, who led New Jersey-based pharmacy benefit manager Medco Health Solutions Inc. until its $29 billion sale this year to St. Louis-based Express Scripts. Internal WellPoint candidates Wayne DeVeydt and Ken Goulet also will receive a thorough look from the board, but former company brass say they have not been fully readied to be CEO because the WellPoint board did not expect to have to replace Braly, 51, so soon.

Amerigroup Corp., the Medicaid managed care company being acquired by WellPoint, will sell its Virginia business to Virginia-based hospital system Inova to placate federal antitrust regulators, according to Reuters. The U.S. Department of Justice had requested additional information from both WellPoint and Amerigroup on their Virginia businesses, according to an announcement from Amerigroup on Friday. The sale to Inova is not expected to have an impact on WellPoint's $4.9 billion acquisition of Amerigroup. Both deals are expected to close in the fourth quarter.

Indianapolis-based Dow AgroSciences LLC said Friday that it has prevailed in a patent-infringement lawsuit involving one of the company’s key weed-control products. The suit, filed in December 2010 by South Africa-based Bayer CropScience SA, charged that Dow AgroSciences’ herbicide-tolerance technology infringed one of its patents. In the Sept. 27 ruling, a federal judge sided with Dow AgroSciences in its motion to have the case dismissed, determining that Dow’s Enlist weed-control technology did not infringe on the patent. Dow AgroSciences, a subsidiary of Midland, Mich.-based Dow Chemical Co., predicts Enlist could earn as much as $1 billion over its life cycle.

One of Indiana University's two new schools of public health has a new name. The school on the Indianapolis campus on Thursday was formally named the Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health. The Fairbanks Foundation last year gave IU $20 million to help establish the school, which evolved from the Department of Public Health in the IU School of Medicine. Another public health school is being established at IU's Bloomington campus. The Bloomington school will focus on rural communities, and the Indianapolis school will focus more on urban health and its connections to the medical school. IU spokeswoman Diane Brown says the Indianapolis school will accept its first new students next spring. Some already are working toward degrees that will be offered by the new school.

The National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research has designated the Indiana University School of Medicine and the Rehabilitation Hospital of Indiana as one of 16 sites in its Traumatic Brain Injury Model System. The designation comes with a five-year, $2.1 million grant to the medical school and the rehab hospital, which is a joint venture of the IU Health and St. Vincent Health hospital systems. Health care providers will use the federal grant money to study the effectiveness of the drugs Buspar and Vanspar in treating irritability and aggression that occur in some traumatic brain injury patients. Researchers at IU and the rehab hospital also hope to develop standard measures to assess the impact of aggression and irritability.

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