Merck is investing €80 million ($107.67 million) in a new plant in China to make treatments for diabetes and other conditions and to realize its aspirations there. But it appears it is looking to India as a way to cut production costs on some of its older products.
When it comes to selling big, cancer drugs have a lot going for them. Their targets--deadly diseases that in many cases can kill quickly--put them in high demand, even as they continue to redefine "premium pricing." Some newer drugs can be targeted at patient groups who have the best chances of benefiting, helping justify those high costs. And biologics, for now, don't face the same generic onslaughts that pummel pharma sales come patent expiration time.
That's not to say they don't face roadblocks. Plenty of cancer heavyweights have run into failed label expansions, governmental cost critics, patent woes and biosimilar threats. But even so, the top 10 managed to rake in worldwide sales between $1.7 billion and $7.8 billion, according to EvaluatePharma data.
There has been talk in recent years about how the industry should expect fewer blockbusters and how drugmakers need to look toward selling more products for fewer dollars, euros, pounds or yen. But it is the big sellers, the blockbusters--no, megablockbusters--that drug execs aspire to develop. And a look at the top 10 best-selling drugs globally can't help but impress with its big numbers.
First of all, each of the top 10 best-selling drugs in the world knocked out more than $5.5 billion in sales last year, according to data provided by the market intelligence gurus at EvaluatePharma. Together, the top 10 turned in $76.38 billion in sales. Yes, that's more than $75 billion in sales from just 10 products. One other drug, Eli Lilly's Cymbalta, topped the $5 billion mark, but having lost its patent in December, it's headed for a serious nosedive this year.
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Novartis has notified the state of New York of its 83-employee layoff beginning Dec. 31 at its plant in Suffern, NY, a facility that will close in 2016, at which point essentially all traces of it will be eliminated.
MannKind signed a deal on July 31, 2014, to buy €120.1 million ($155.7 million) worth of recombinant human insulin from Amphastar France Pharmaceuticals to fill its inhalers.
About three months before Hospira closed on its acquisition of an API plant from India's Orchid Chemicals & Pharmaceuticals, FDA inspectors made a visit to the facility in Waluj. They had concerns with what they found.
Baxter International is again recalling a sodium chloride product, but this time, instead of particulate contamination, it is because another product was mistakenly mixed in the shipment.
The FDA has put off reconsideration of Impax Laboratories' Parkinson drug Rytary. The delay will give the California company some additional time to work on the latest in a series of FDA concerns over its manufacturing that have kept the drug sidelined.
Gilead Sciences is presenting a huge gift to Mylan and half a dozen Indian generics makers. It is transferring the manufacturing technology for its biggest product and its blessing to go make cheap copies in 91 markets.
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AstraZeneca is following the well-trodden path of offshoring part of its IT to India. But unlike some of its peers--and in a reversal of its own strategy--the Big Pharma is adding in-house capacity and lessening its reliance on IT service providers.
With clinical trial sponsors spending a sizable chunk of their huge Phase III trial budgets on source data verification in return for questionable benefits, risk-based monitoring is an obvious target for TransCelerate BioPharma's R&D efficiency agenda. The Big Pharma consortium has further clarified its thinking on the topic in two research papers.