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Sarepta stock soars after advisers recommend approval of treatment

Sarepta Therapeutics headquarters in Cambridge.Ruby Wallau


Sarepta stock soars after advisers recommend approval of treatment

Sarepta’s stock rose more than 30 percent Monday after US regulatory advisers recommended approval for the company’s gene therapy for a severe inherited muscular disease. The advisers voted 8-6 Friday evening in favor of clearing Sarepta’s genetic treatment for Duchenne muscular dystrophy, a condition that mainly affects boys, killing most by their early 20s. The Food and Drug Administration isn’t required to follow the recommendations of its advisers, although it often does. Sarepta shares rose as much as 26 percent at the market open in New York their biggest intraday gain since December 2019. The treatment has shown in studies that it raises levels of a protein believed to indicate patient benefit, but those same tests haven’t shown actual improvements in health compared to placebo. Nonetheless, the recommendation is a huge win for Sarepta, likely paving the way for the company’s fourth accelerated approval for a Duchenne drug and the first for a gene therapy for the disease. — BLOOMBERG NEWS



Mass. dentist sentenced to two years in prison for embezzlement

A Massachusetts dentist who embezzled more than $1.2 million from his employer and fraudulently obtained an additional $50,000 in pandemic relief funding was sentenced Monday to two years in prison, federal prosecutors said. Jack Massarsky, 65, embezzled from his Cape Cod-based employer between 2015 and 2021 by intercepting insurance reimbursement checks mailed to the practice and depositing them in a secret bank account he opened in the practice’s name, the US attorney’soffice in Boston said. He used the money for personal and family expenses, authorities said. He also submitted a fraudulent application to the federal Health Resources and Services Administration Provider Relief Fund in the name of the practice in 2020 and was given more than $52,000 in pandemic relief funds that were intended provide economic assistance to qualifying health care providers, prosecutors said. — ASSOCIATED PRESS



Lab error led to salad recall

A laboratory error incorrectly caused a recall announcement for a brand of salad greens, the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services said. The products from lēf Farms are safe and the recall has been canceled, the department said in a news release Thursday. The May 5 recall notice regarded a “potential” E. coli bacteria contamination of a specific lot of the company’s “Spice” packaged salad greens. When it heard the news, the Loudon-based hydroponics company voluntarily initiated a recall of potentially affected products, the department said. The recall notice was directed at Hannaford and Market Basket supermarkets in Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, and Vermont. — ASSOCIATED PRESS

Elon Musk departs the Phillip Burton Federal Building and United States Court House in San Francisco on Jan. 24, 2023. Benjamin Fanjoy/Associated Press


Musk cannot back out of SEC settlement over Tesla tweets

Elon Musk cannot back out of a settlement with securities regulators that was reached after his 2018 tweets claiming he had secured funding to take Tesla private caused the electric vehicle maker’s share price to jump and led to a temporary halt in trading, an appeals court ruled Monday. The summary order by the US Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit in Manhattan was released just days after a three-judge panel heard lawyers’ arguments in the case. Musk had challenged a lower court judge’s ruling last year requiring him to abide by the deal on the grounds that circumstances have changed and because the decree contains a “prior restraint” that Musk contends violates the First Amendment. The settlement with the Securities and Exchange Commission required that his tweets be approved first by a Tesla attorney. It also called for Musk and Tesla to pay civil fines over the tweets in which Musk said he had “funding secured” to take Tesla private at $420 per share. The funding wasn’t secured and Tesla remains public. — ASSOCIATED PRESS



Giant plant to make ethanol-based jet fuel planned for Gulf Coast

Honeywell International Inc. and Summit Agricultural Group are partnering to build the world’s largest plant making ethanol-based aviation fuel — a project that’s likely to become a $1 billion facility and expected to open in 2025. The plant will eventually produce enough jet fuel to power thousands of flights per year, according to Summit Agricultural run by entrepreneur Bruce Rastetter. The facility will be located in the US Gulf Coast and will utilize Honeywell’s technology to transform ethanol into sustainable aviation fuel, known as SAF, the companies said in a statement Monday. — BLOOMBERG NEWS


3M fires executive over personal conduct

3M fired executive Michael Vale for “inappropriate personal conduct” and violating company policy less than a month after he was promoted to one of the manufacturer’s top posts. The company said in a statement Monday that Vale was terminated “for cause” as of May 12. It didn’t specify details of the issue other than to say that it was “unrelated to the company’s operations and financial performance.” Vale, a 30-year 3M veteran, had been named just three weeks ago to the new position of group president and chief business and country officer, overseeing three of the firm’s four units. — BLOOMBERG NEWS

Printed editions of The Philadelphia Inquirer newspaper are seen, Monday, May 15, 2023, in Marple Township, Pa. Matt Slocum/Associated Press


Philadelphia Inquirer hit by cyberattack

The Philadelphia Inquirer says a weekend cyberattack caused the biggest disruption to its operations in 27 years and prevented it from publishing its Sunday print edition. The attack was detected Saturday morning when employees found that the paper’s content-management system wasn’t working, the Inquirer reported on its website. The cyberattack caused the largest disruption to the publication of Pennsylvania’s largest news organization — the company publishes The Philadelphia Inquirer and The Philadelphia Daily News — since a blizzard in January 1996, the company reported. — ASSOCIATED PRESS



EU’s growth forecast improves

The European Union’s executive body raised its economic growth forecast, saying Europe had dodged a winter recession that was feared amid an energy crisis but warning that stubbornly high inflation is likely to keep hurting the economy by sapping people’s ability to spend. The outlook for the 20 countries using the euro currency improved to growth of 1.1 percent this year from 0.9 percent in the previous predictions in February, the European Commission said in its spring forecast Monday. — ASSOCIATED PRESS


Ford could cut more than 1,300 jobs in China

Ford plans to cut jobs in China, potentially by more than 1,300, as its sales decline in the world’s biggest car market, local media including Economic Daily News reported. Ford’s wholesales in China fell below half a million units for the first time in a decade in 2022, continuing a slide since 2016, when the US automaker shipped 1.27 million vehicles and had a market share of 4.6 percent. That share dropped to 2.1 percent last year, as Chinese consumers increasingly embrace electric vehicles made by the likes of Tesla and local players such as BYD Co. — BLOOMBERG NEWS



Rare Rolex for scientists sells at record price

A rare and pristine condition Rolex Milgauss watch sold for $2.5 million, smashing records for the highest amount paid at auction for the Swiss brand’s timepiece made for scientists. The stainless steel watch, produced in 1958 and designed to resist magnetic fields, features a black honeycomb dial, rotating bezel, and a second hand shaped like a lightning bolt. Rolex discontinued the latest version of the Milgauss in March. — BLOOMBERG NEWS