While European regulators may be following the precautionary principle when it comes to GMOs, with drugs, they sometimes take a more laissez faire approach than their U.S. counterparts. This appears to be the case with two drugs being developed by Shire Pharmaceuticals Group plc: Reminyl galantamine for Alzheimer's disease and Lambda lanthanum carbonate to treat hyperphosphatemia in dialysis patients.

Shire (LSE:SHP; SHPGY, Andover, U.K.) and partner Janssen Pharmaceutica Products LP (Beers, Belgium) received an approvable letter last week from the FDA for Reminyl, an acetylcholinesterase inhibitor. Reminyl is approved in Europe, with European launches anticipated in the fourth quarter.