Bristol-Myers making R&D strategy changes

NEW YORK (AP) — Bristol-Myers Squibb says it is changing its research and development strategy, and will focus on some of its key drugs and experimental treatments for HIV, hepatitis B, cancer, immune conditions, and fibrotic disease.

Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. also said it will eliminate about 75 research and development jobs by the end of 2013. The company had a total of 28,000 employees at the end of 2012.

The company said therapies that use the immune system to treat cancer will also be an important focus. But it said in a posting on its website Thursday that it will stop broad-based drug discovery work in the fields of hepatitis C, diabetes, and neuroscience.

The company said it will focus on its blood thinner Eliquis, cancer drugs Sprycel and Erbitux, Orencia for rheumatoid arthritis, hepatitis B treatment Baraclude, HIV drug Reyataz, and its experimental hepatitis C drugs.

Shares of Bristol-Myers Squibb stock rose 75 cents to $52.05 in morning trading Friday.

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