Corrections or additions?

This column was prepared for the April 12, 2006 issue of U.S. 1

Newspaper. All rights reserved.

Between The Lines

While bad news is the bread and butter (circulation and subscription

base) of daily newspapers, we weeklies are freed from ambulance

chasing by the very nature of our longer publishing clock. We have

more time to look at stories, and we find that we tend to get excited

about those that are positive. The growth of an entrepreneur’s dream

into a solid business is a story we enjoy telling, along with in-depth

behind-the-scenes portraits of people who are making a difference in

our communities – and beyond.

This week, however, we deviate from our pattern to present a

state-of-our-state report that is a bit dark. Michele Alperin, a

frequent U.S. 1 contributor went to hear James Hughes address

Princeton’s 55 Plus group last week. Hughes, dean of the Edward J.

Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy at Rutgers, and

arguably the most prolific economic trend guru in the state, sees

trouble. Trouble now, with a Class A office vacancy rate at 21 percent

and the disappearance of thousands of high-paying jobs in technology,

telecommunications, and the pharmaceutical industry, and more trouble

in the future. He is issuing a wake-up call, and Alperin provides all

of the details, starting on page 37.

In a companion story, senior editor Barbara Fox speaks with Rita

Gunther McGrath, a Columbia University economist and author, whose

most recent book is "Marketbusters." McGrath keeps a close eye on the

Princeton-area economy and is seeing signs of consolidation in a

number of key industries.

All is not negative, though. Fox and McGrath together go through the

findings in U.S. 1’s annual directory – due to come out next

Wednesday, April 19 – and, upon analyzing its exhaustive data,

categorized by industry, McGrath says that she is heartened to see

that so many small and mid-sized businesses are growing so well.

Meanwhile, as U.S. 1 reported last week, Novo Nordisk, the world’s

leading producer of insulin and one of the healthy large

pharmaceuticals in the area, is doing well, having just opened a new

facility on Route 1. This week the company reports that Levemir, its

new long-acting basal insulin analog that doesn’t cause weight gain,

is available for diabetes patients in the United States.

An important breakthrough treatment in a disease threatening to become

a full-blown epidemic, Levemir is designed for use in once or

twice-daily injections for treatment of adults and children with type

1 diabetes and adults with type 2 diabetes.

In addition to being long-acting, Levemir is an advance because it

curbs the weight gain and hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) that are

common side effects of insulin therapy and can be barriers to patients

obtaining glycemic control.

In every clinical trial of the drug, patients treated with Levemir

consistently gained less weight than patients treated with another

basal insulin. Novo Nordisk contends that the drug offers patients up

to 24 hours of effective blood glucose control. Many current insulin

therapies require multiple injections each day to maintain an

acceptable level of blood glucose. For the 20 million Americans with

diabetes, that is good news indeed.

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