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Melville drug company to lay off 100 workers

Melville-based Nycomed US Inc., the U.S. headquarters of a Swiss company, is planning to lay off 100 people, but a spokeswoman declined Tuesday to say how many Long Island workers would be affected.

The pharmaceutical manufacturer, which specializes in dermatology products, recently announced a restructuring plan that calls for the layoffs to take place through the end of the year, said Mindy Kirsch, vice president of human resources.

"We've got changed dynamics in the industry," Kirsch said, referring to the slow economy and mergers and acquisitions in the pharmaceutical industry. "So we need to adapt."

The layoffs would affect workers in five U.S. locations, including Melville and Hicksville, and in the company field sales force, Kirsch said.

The company didn't disclose how many people work in those two offices. But in 2005, when the company was called Altana Inc., those locations had 500 employees.

Kirsch said the company has put in place a "special severance program for everybody" but declined to divulge any details.

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