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January 7, 2013
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Indianapolis-based Eli Lilly and Co. and Germany-based Boehringer Ingelheim GmbH got good news from their Phase 3 trial of a new drug for patients with Type 2 diabetes, and said they plan to file for its market approval later this year. The drug, called empagliflozin, lowered diabetics’ levels of hemoglobin—a measure of blood sugar—more than a placebo. How the new drug will compare against similar drugs, called sodium glucose co-transporter-2 inhibitors, remains unclear. Lilly competitors Johnson & Johnson, Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. and AstraZeneca plc are racing to bring the new class of drugs to market. But Lilly and Boehringer officials said they are pleased enough with the results to file for a launch this year, according to a statement released Monday by Lilly. "We are pleased with the results for these Phase III clinical trials for empagliflozin," Enrique Conterno, president of Lilly's diabetes division, said in a prepared statement. "Diabetes is growing at a tremendous rate across the world. Patients and their physicians need more treatment options in order to help improve their blood sugar levels and reach their treatment goals." Also, Lilly and Boehringer Ingelheim announced that Lilly will re-assume exclusive development rights to a once-a-day insulin it calls LY2605541. That drug, as well as empagliflozin, were part of a co-development agreement Lilly and Boehringer signed in January 2011. Lilly unveiled a better-than-expected 2013 earnings forecast Friday, which sent its stock up by nearly 4 percent that day. The drugmaker forecast 2013 adjusted earnings of between $3.75 and $3.90 per share. Wall Street analysts were expecting 2013 earnings of $3.73 per share, according to a survey by FactSet.

The physician arm of Indianapolis-based hospital system Community Health Network took over cardiovascular services at Community Westview Hospital, displacing The Care Group LLC, on Jan. 1. Community Physician Network will now provide all specialty heart care at the 67-bed hospital at West 38th Street and North Guion Road. Community Health Network absorbed Westview in June 2011, securing a presence on the west side of Indianapolis to accompany its existing hospitals on the southern, eastern and northern sides of the metro area. The Care Group, one of the city’s largest physician practices, was acquired by Indianapolis-based hospital system St. Vincent Health in 2010. Community and St. Vincent are now working together to sign contracts with employers and health insurers in what they call an affordable care consortium.

A building on the northwest side of Indianapolis is the target of a foreclosure claiming that owner Women’s Physician Group LLP has defaulted on a $9 million loan. The lawsuit, filed Dec. 13 by U.S. Bank, claims that the physicians' group received the loan in April 2007 and stopped payment in August 2012, owing $8.7 million in principal. Including penalties and fees, though, U.S. Bank is seeking nearly $10.5 million, according to the suit. The 33,617-square-foot building at 8081 Township Line Road is completely occupied, according to the website of Cornerstone Companies Inc., the building’s broker. A representative of the physician group could not be reached for comment.

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