By Ben Hirschler and Adam Jourdan SHANGHAI (Reuters) - China, already a global powerhouse in high-tech areas from solar panels to bullet trains, is turning its industrial might to the challenge of making more of its own drugs for a vast and ageing population. Given the 10 years or more it typically takes to bring a new medicine to market, original "Made in China" treatments won't arrive overnight, but multinationals are already encountering more competition from local generic drugs that look set for a quantum leap in quality. The stakes are high. China is the world's second biggest drugs market behind the United States, and fast food, smoking and pollution have fuelled a rise in cancers and chronic heart and lung diseases. The country also has more diabetics than any other in the world, with numbers expected to hit 151 million by 2040 from 110 million today, according to the International Diabetes Federation. That has made China a sweet spot for Denmark's Novo Nordisk; the world's biggest insulin producer has mined a rich seam in the country since opening production facilities here in 1995. By 2010, it dominated 63 percent of China's insulin market. But it has recently been losing ground to local competitors cheered on by Beijing. "China is going to be tough for us for the next couple of years," said Chief Science Officer Mads Krogsgaard Thomsen. "Right now, the country is very focused on building domestic production." Local rivals are selling both cut-price basic insulin and sophisticated modern versions, including a biosimilar copy of Sanofi's Lantus made by Chinese biotech specialist Gan & Lee Pharmaceuticals. END OF BRANDED GENERICS? Greater local competition is also evident in other areas, helping the top 10 Chinese drugmakers grow sales 12 percent on average this year, according to IMS Consulting - twice the rate of multinationals, which suffered a setback from a bribery scandal at GlaxoSmithKline two years ago. GSK itself has seen its drug sales slump. Increasing local competition is part of a structural upheaval in China's hospital-dominated prescription drug market. Selling drugs to patients at a hefty mark-up - especially off-patent Western "branded generics" - often accounts for 40-50 percent of Chinese hospitals' revenues. But the authorities are now pushing a policy of zero mark-ups, initially in smaller county hospitals. "Branded generics are something that exist today, but the need for them in 10 years time is not going to be there," said Luke Miels, AstraZeneca's global portfolio head. That means foreign firms will be more reliant on new, patented medicines, although the scale of demand for such expensive products is uncertain in a country with only basic health insurance cover. At the other end of the spectrum, multinationals aim to build up volume, often in partnership with local players, in the big markets outside China's top cities, where distribution costs are high and prices low. "It's the right thing to do, even if profit margins shrink," said the head of one big multinational. REGULATOR REFORM Pivotal to the transformation of the market is the China Food and Drug Administration, led by reformist boss Bi Jingquan since January. The watchdog has promised to speed up approval of innovative new drugs, which can take 5-7 years, while cracking down on substandard local generics. "This creates lots of opportunities for local Chinese companies that have a strong focus on innovation," said a spokesman for China's Fosun Pharma, which sees itself among the winners. It is not alone. A cluster of drug research labs in eastern Shanghai highlights the promise of China's life sciences sector. The area brings together multinational and local firms, alongside contract research businesses and small biotech operations. Among the latter is Hua Medicine, led by Chinese-born, Western-educated Chief Executive Li Chen, who used to run Roche's China R&D centre. Now he is developing a novel diabetes treatment, licensed from Roche, while working on Hua's own promising leads. Another standard-bearer for Chinese biotech is Beijing-based cancer specialist BeiGene, which last month announced plans for a $100 million initial public offering on Nasdaq. At a time when China's academic researchers have grabbed headlines by editing the genes of human embryos, such start-ups highlight the commercial potential of China's biotech know-how. The history of failure in drug development suggests they won't have an easy ride, but GSK's China R&D head Min Li, a returnee from America, believes "there is a real chance for China to leap ahead in life sciences". Dennis Gillings, executive chairman of leading contract research organisation Quintiles, said the number of Chinese-developed drugs in the pipeline was rising fast. "It's probably been taking everyone a little by surprise, the sheer scale of that," he said. "As we hit the next decade in the 2020s, I'd be very surprised if there wasn't at least a top 20, if not top 10, global pharma player that was headquartered in China." (Reporting by Ben Hirschler and Adam Jourdan; Editing by Will Waterman)
Photos of Prince Harry and Prince William walking apart at Prince Philip’s funeral don’t show the whole picture of their relationship
Prince Harry and Prince William walked separately at Prince Philip's funeral, with Peter Phillips separating them, as Buckingham Palace had planned.
Four of the eight who died at a FedEx warehouse were members of the Sikh community.
- The Independent
18-year-old man from Ohio with assault rifle and wearing gas mask taken into custody
- The Telegraph
The Duke of Edinburgh was the "glue" that held his wider family together, his German great niece said on Saturday. Princess Xenia of Hohenlohe-Langenburg said the Duke's longevity meant he was the one common link to the past for foreign-based branches of the family, for whom he was an "idol". Her brother, Prince Philipp, is one of three German relatives of the Duke given the honour of being among the 30 mourners at St George’s Chapel. The Duke's four sisters all married into the German aristocracy but were not invited to his wedding in 1947 because of sensitivities around the Second World War. However Prince Philip, who outlived all his sisters by decades, remained close to their descendants and often visited them in Germany. Speaking from Munich, Princess Xenia said: "He's been like a glue for the family, because sadly a lot of our grandmothers passed away much too early. "But he was always there, he was the link, so he brought all of us cousins, even though we were in Germany – a lot of us but not all of us – he brought us all together on a lot of family occasions, the last one having been his 90th birthday celebrations 10 years ago at Windsor. We were all there, there was a huge bunch of us, and it was lovely."
- The Daily Beast
Chris Jackson/GettyThe queen has a brooch for every occasion—even the funeral of her husband, Prince Philip. The queen’s mourning clothes, though a stark contrast to her usual pastel ensembles, came accented with a special accessory that paid homage to her partner of 73 years.According to Express, the queen wore her Richmond Brooch on Saturday. It’s one of the largest in her collection, the paper reported, and was a wedding present for her grandmother Queen Mary’s nuptials in 1893. Usually the Queen wears the pin, made of diamonds, with a hanging pear-shaped pearl drop. But that feature was removed for the funeral.The sparkling accessory lit up the queen’s all-black look, and matched her face mask—also black, with white trim around the edges. The monarch sat alone through the funeral, which was pared-down due to the pandemic, like so many others.Prince Harry and Prince William Reunite After Prince Philip’s Funeral, Where the Queen Sat AloneBut the queen was not solitary in her statement jewelry. Kate Middleton also brought her own. Actually, it came from the queen: the Duchess wore a four-strand pearl necklace borrowed from Elizabeth’s collection.Today reports that it was made with pearls gifted from the Japanese government. Princess Diana wore the choker to a dinner in 1982.Kate’s matching pearl-drop earrings, which peeked out from underneath her netted black fascinator, were also from the Queen’s jewelry box. For the somber affair, the Duchess was able to sneak in a dash of glamour with her veil and Roland Mouret dress.One photographer caught Kate right before she exited her vehicle, and she stared straight into the camera’s lens. Such determined, direct eye contact isn’t something the Duchess is known for, but her look set the tone for a dignified, if very different, type of royal funeral.As had been previously reported, the royals did not wear military dress. Following their father and grandfather’s coffin, Prince Charles, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew, Prince Edward, Prince William, and Prince Harry were all seen wearing medals, a compromise reached after an internal debate in the royal family about the appropriate dress for Harry and Andrew.Camilla Parker Bowles wore pearls and a brooch that also dripped with significance. As Hello noted, she showed up in the so-called Bugle brooch, which honored Philip’s tenure as Colonel-in-Chief of The Rifles, an infantry regiment of the British Army.For his final public engagement last year, the Duke of Edinburgh passed on his position to Camilla, who is his daughter-in-law. So it’s a significant and symbolic jewelry choice for the day.Princess Eugenie, a new mother who named her infant son after Philip, wore a netted veil to the ceremony. It was similar to Kate’s, though Eugenie paired hers with an oversized black headband.Unlike the other women, Eugenie did not wear much jewelry, save for a simple pair of earrings. She did, however, wear a rather trendy Gabriela Hearst trench coat, per the Daily Mail.Penny Brabourne, Countess Mountbatten, a close friend of Philip’s and fellow equestrian, was one of the 30 guests who was not a direct family member. (She is married to Philip’s godson, Norton Knatchbull.) She wore a black pillbox hat and fitted suit, along with a crystal fern brooch.Of course Meghan Markle, who is pregnant, was unable to travel from Los Angeles with Prince Harry. She might not have been there in person—the former Duchess reportedly watched from home—but Meghan ensured a part of her was present. Per The Daily Mail, Meghan left a handwritten note on a wreath left at the chapel. The royal family did not speak at the event. Emotions were expressed in other ways. Some of it was literal, like when Sophie, the Countess of Wessex wiped away tears in the chapel. Some of it was more symbolic, like the queen sitting alone while bidding goodbye to her husband. Or William and Harry chatting after the ceremony, two estranged brothers brought together through grief. And much of it was through fashion: small nods to history, and hand-me-downs representing the continuation of longstanding royal tradition. Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.
- The Telegraph
The Duchess of Sussex wrote the card attached to the wreath sent by her and Prince Harry to ensure that, in a small way, she played a part in the Duke of Edinburgh's funeral service. Meghan, who is heavily pregnant with the couple's second child, had hoped to attend the ceremony but was advised against travelling by her doctor. The 39-year-old was watching the funeral on television at home in Montecito, California. The Sussexes' tribute was among nine family wreaths laid in the Quire of St George's Chapel, propped against the stalls on each side of the Duke's coffin. Buckingham Palace aides declined to provide details of the other wreaths, saying they were private. But a source close to the Sussexes confirmed that theirs had been designed and handmade by Willow Crossley, a Cotswold florist known for her natural, rustic arrangements. The variety of locally sourced flowers, some of which were picked from the designer's garden, were chosen due to their particular significance.
- Business Insider
Elon Musk says Starlink should be 'fully mobile' by the end of 2021, allowing customers to use it at any address or in moving vehicles
Elon Musk said Friday that Starlink users should be able to move their satellite internet hardware between addresses by the end of the year.
Photos of the Queen at Prince Harry's wedding and Prince Philip's funeral - held at the same venue - highlight the impact of her loss
The Queen attended Prince Harry's wedding at the same chapel where Prince Philip's funeral was. Photos from the events emphasize her loss.
- Associated Press
Skipper Tom Slingsby and the defending SailGP champion Australian crew capsized the U.S. team’s foiling 50-foot catamaran on Bermuda’s Great Sound on Friday during its first training session for the global tour’s season opener. Slingsby said there were only minor injuries and the boat was quickly righted before being towed back to base. U.S. skipper Jimmy Spithill said there was enough damage that the high-tech boat could be out of action for a few days.
- The Telegraph
The historic family ties that prompted The Queen to invite German royalty Follow live updates from Prince Philip's funeral The Duke of Edinburgh's great niece, whose brother is in Windsor for his funeral on Saturday, has remembered Prince Philip as an "idol" for the younger generation of their family. Speaking from Munich, Princess Xenia of Hohenlohe-Langenburg said the Duke was a powerful role model to her and his "selflessness, lack of ego and sense of humour" will never be forgotten. Her tribute comes as the Queen prepares to say farewell to her husband of 73 years at Windsor Castle. "To all of us, he was an idol, he was somebody to look up to, we had enormous respect for him and it was always very exciting when he came to visit, and he came often," said Princess Xenia of Hohenlohe-Langenburg. "And this has become clear to me in the week since he's died - the way he lived his life, his motto, which was an unwritten motto for us, this discipline, this selflessness, this lack of ego, but also his sense of humour always underlying all of that.
- Associated Press
The 300-million-year-old shark’s teeth were the first sign that it might be a distinct species. “Great for grasping and crushing prey rather than piercing prey,” said discoverer John-Paul Hodnett, who was a graduate student when he unearthed the first fossils of the shark at a dig east of Albuquerque in 2013. This week, Hodnett and a slew of other researchers published their findings in a bulletin of the New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science identifying the shark as a separate species.
In London's East End, there was both adoration for the monarchy and sharp criticism of some members of Britain's royal family on the eve of the funeral of Prince Philip, who died a week ago after seven decades of service to his wife Queen Elizabeth. The queen, heir-to-the-throne Prince Charles and other senior royals will pay their last respects to Philip on Saturday at a ceremonial funeral at Windsor Castle that will be broadcast live by television stations across the world. "My TV's always off - I watch YouTube and just internet and social media stuff," said Johnathan Roach, a 33-year-old window cleaner in Whitechapel, east London.
- The Telegraph
The strange parallels between Prince Philip and Prince Albert, two Royals who died in Windsor Castle
In a remarkable coincidence, the last significant royal death at Windsor Castle was that of Albert, Prince Consort – Prince Philip’s great-great-grandfather and someone who also worked indefatigably for his Queen and his adopted country. Unlike the Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Albert had little time to prepare his funeral, dying at a mere 42 years of age, and it was down to the widowed Queen Victoria to interpret his wishes. Victoria herself would not be in attendance, following the convention that funerals were a male only preserve, and that women were too frail to conceal their grief in public. Instead, crying inconsolably, she headed for Osborne House on the Isle of Wight, where she failed to conceal her grief in private and began her 40 years of mourning. She left behind her preparations for the sort of funeral Albert would have loathed. Mourners wore long black coats and wide-brimmed hats with ‘weepers’, something Albert had thought excessive a few years earlier at the obsequies for Victoria’s aunt, the Duchess of Gloucester. On Victoria’s instructions, the rooms and corridors of Windsor Castle were covered in black drapes. Her only concession was to have Albert’s funeral at noon in broad daylight. Previous funerals were held at twilight with torches lighting the processional route. Prince Philip’s body will be carried from the castle’s State Entrance by soldiers from the The Queen’s Company, 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards. Philip was Colonel of the Grenadiers for 40 years from 1975. Albert held the same position and the regiment formed a guard of honour at the entrance to the chapel. Albert’s hearse was drawn by six black horse wearing black feathers. The only flowers were from Albert’s daughters the princesses Alice, Helena and Louise, who had made a wreath of moss and violets, while Victoria’s tribute was a simple bouquet of violets with a single camellia in their centre. It is thought one wreath from the Queen will be carried on Prince Philip’s coffin today. Empty mourning carriages followed the hearse, representing the Queen, the Prince of Wales, her cousin the Duke of Cambridge and his mother Augusta, Duchess of Cambridge. How to watch Prince Philip's funeral live
LONDON (Reuters) -Helen McCrory, the "beautiful and mighty" British actress known for playing steely female characters on stage and screen, has died of cancer at the age of 52, her husband, Damian Lewis, said on Friday. The shock announcement drew tributes from author JK Rowling, fellow actors including Michael Sheen and from the artistic director at London's National Theatre who hailed McCrory as "unquestionably one of the great actors of her generation". On screen she starred as Narcissa Malfoy in Harry Potter films, as the matriarch of a crime family in Peaky Blinders and as the wife of former prime minister Tony Blair, Cherie.
- The Daily Beast
Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast / Photo via GettyAfter private equity billionaire Robert Smith admitted to a 15-year tax fraud scheme to hide $225 million from the Internal Revenue Service, he signed a rare non-prosecution agreement with law enforcement, allowing him to avoid any charges and return to civilian life.But while Smith attends birthday parties and New York Times conferences, the man he hired to help execute the fraud faces federal charges and up to 14 years in prison.On Thursday, a grand jury in San Francisco indicted Smith’s long-time attorney, 82-year-old Carlos Kepke, on charges of conspiring with the CEO to defraud the IRS. If found guilty, the octogenarian could see as much as five years in prison for conspiracy and up to three years for each charge of filing a false return; Kepke is alleged to have filed three.In the indictment, prosecutors claim the attorney helped Smith create a network of offshore trusts and LLCs in Belize and the Caribbean island of Nevis to conceal about $225 million in income Smith had earned from capital gains from 1999 until 2014. In the first months of the new millennium, Kepke allegedly established an LLC on Nevis called Flash Holdings, and a Belizean trust called Excelsior. Neither entity, according to the indictment, had any purpose other than to hold Smith’s assets.This Billionaire Wants Everyone to Move on From His CrimesInvestigators believe Kepke established Excelsior under the name of Smith’s ex-wife’s elderly uncle, giving Smith a lesser role (but one with the power to appoint and remove the trustee). He then allegedly set it up such that the trust, rather than Smith, officially owned Flash Holdings. As a result, when the investor would deposit funds into Flash’s bank accounts, held in the tax-evasion hotspots of Switzerland and the British Virgin Islands, the money did not, nominally, belong to Smith––who in turn, did not report it on his taxes. “In reality,” the filing reads, “as Kepke knew, Smith actually earned this income, and retained full dominion and control over it.”Between 2007 and 2014, Smith allegedly paid Kepke nearly $1 million for the creation and management of the two entities, alongside a slew of other services, including filing three false tax returns on Smith’s behalf from 2012 to 2014. According to the indictment, since at least 2009, Kepke’s compensation included a fee to “purge” or as he put it, “securitize,” his files on Smith or his entities by destroying records.The charging document arrived on April 15—Tax Day—just two days after IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig told a Senate panel that tax evasion in the U.S. could easily exceed $1 trillion a year. A source familiar with Smith's case told The Daily Beast that the indictment marked the latest in the Department of Justice’s effort to pursue not only those who fail to pay taxes “but those who enable tax evasion by creating the ‘infrastructure’ of tax evasion.” That, the source said, “can include bankers, accountants, notaries, trust advisors, and even lawyers.”As part of Smith’s non-prosecution agreement, he agreed to testify against his former business partner, Robert Brockman, who was charged in October for an alleged 20-year scheme to conceal $2 billion in income from the Internal Revenue Service—the largest tax evasion charge in United States history.The 39-count indictment detailed a cartoonish conspiracy in which Brockman and associates communicated via code names like “Bonefish” and “Snapper,” used hidden income to buy a luxury yacht called “Turmoil,” and destroyed evidence with hammers. At one point, Brockman allegedly invited a wealth manager to adopt an alias and attend a “money laundering conference.”Brockman, who pleaded not guilty, has so far avoided trial. In court filings, attorneys representing the former CEO have claimed he suffers from a case of rapidly deteriorating dementia. The billionaire will be assessed at a mental competency hearing in June.Kepke also has alleged ties to Brockman. In Smith’s statement of facts, delivered to prosecutors for the landmark case, he indicated that Brockman, identified in the document as “Individual A,” had introduced him to an attorney, named only as “Individual B”—whom the indictment indicates was Kepke. Neither Kepke nor Smith agreed to comment for this article, but a source close to Smith confirmed the identity of Individual B to The Daily Beast.“The indictment is not a surprise as you know since in the Statement of Facts released last year as part of Robert's Non Prosecution Agreement (NPA), there were two individuals of interest to the DOJ—Bob Brockman (now known to be Individual A), and Carlos Kepke as Brockman's lawyer (now known to be Individual B)—and that Robert's cooperation represented DOJ's best avenue to prosecuting each of those individuals,” the source said.The DOJ could not have prosecuted Kepke on the basis of his role as Brockman’s lawyer, the source said, due to a statute of limitations—hence the indictment’s focus on Smith. Prosecutors may have hoped Kepke would cooperate, like Smith, in their case against Brockman. But to former federal prosecutor Paul Pelletier, who spent 27 years in the Department of Justice, the indictment suggests that Kepke declined to follow Smith’s lead.“Between Smith's non-prosecution agreement [in October] and now, you know [Kepke's] been given ample time to cooperate, and he hasn't,” Pelletier said. “So they had to charge him."Typically, there are two ways to prosecute someone in the federal system. One way is to secure an indictment through a grand jury. The other way is by “information”—or through a charging document drafted with the consent of the defendant. If someone chooses to cooperate, they often plead guilty to an information, because it allows them greater influence on what they’re charged with. “If Kepke was cooperating,” Pelletier said, “I presume they would have charged him by information.”Former IRS investigator Martin Sheil, who has written for The Daily Beast, argued that prosecutors need to crack down on what he called the “wealth facilitators”—the lawyers, accountants, and financial consultants who enable tax evasion. “The entitled wealthy class seem to fully embrace Leona Helmsley’s famous aphorism that ‘only the little people pay taxes,’” Sheil told The Daily Beast. “And it is the lawyers and accountants that continue to engender this sense of entitlement by aiding and abetting the wealthy in their tax fraud pursuits.”But in the juxtaposition of Smith and Kepke’s cases, Pelletier saw a clear double standard. “It looks like the government is putting the heavy hand on an 82-year-old, yet obviously didn’t put the same heavy hand on Smith,” he said. “If you want to indict Kepke, indict Kepke. But we know they didn’t charge Smith? The government has to treat equally situated people equally.”Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast hereGet our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.
Zack Snyder confirms Wayne T. Carr would have played Green Lantern in his 4-hour 'Justice League' movie
During a conversation at Justice Con 2021, Snyder confirmed that Wayne T. Carr would have played John Stewart in his "Snyder Cut."
- Business Insider
Embattled Chinese billionaire Jack Ma may divest his Ant Group stake and give up control, reports say
In the wake of his public comments about financial regulations, Jack Ma may potentially exit his Ant Group empire, Reuters reported.
Alison Brie and Dave Franco spent early pandemic days sleeping in and eating too much before finding a routine that helped their relationship thrive
The actress told Insider that self-care was a key component for the couple in keeping a strong relationship while they were stuck in their house.
- USA TODAY
Republican Rep. Adam Kinzinger said GOP lawmakers who plan on joining the “America First Caucus" should be removed from their committee assignments.
The deployment is aimed at showing solidarity with Ukraine and Britain's NATO allies, the newspaper reported https://bit.ly/32pc4BK. One Type 45 destroyer armed with anti-aircraft missiles and an anti-submarine Type 23 frigate will leave the Royal Navy's carrier task group in the Mediterranean and head through the Bosphorus into the Black Sea, according to the report. RAF F-35B Lightning stealth jets and Merlin submarine-hunting helicopters will stand ready on the task group's flag ship, the carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth, to support the warships in the Black Sea, the report added.