It's tough luck for Canada's Apotex in its international slug fest with the FDA. An arbitration panel has tossed its claim that the FDA violated the North American Free Trade Act when it banned products from its plants in Toronto and Quebec from 2009 to 2011.
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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You have heard about the FBI Top 10 Most Wanted list, and of the America's Most Wanted television show, but are you familiar with the FDA's list of Most Wanted Fugitives? Yes, the drug oversight agency has bad players who have fled that it would like to bring to justice. And it would like your help to do that. Read more >>
Olympus Biologics' loss is Novo Nordisk's gain. This year, Japan-based Olympus gave up on producing regenerative products in the U.S. and put a "reduced" sale price on a plant in New Hampshire, which it said would close by August if it could not find a buyer. August rolled around and Sweden-based Novo swept in with a buy.
The big deal in contract manufacturing these days is biologics. Patheon is among those investing in facilities to capture more of that business. Patheon parent DPx has agreed to buy Gallus BioPharmaceuticals, presenting Patheon with its first biologics plants in the U.S.
Merck KGaA emphasized the importance of China as a market when it announced last year it would build a new plant there, and again last month when it announced it was getting ready to start construction on the facility. And this week, just in case anyone had missed it, the drugmaker said construction had begun on the plant which will make meds on China's essential drug list.
In an effort to contain the Ebola outbreak in Africa that has already killed more than 1,500 people, companies around the world, including GlaxoSmithKline, are fast-tracking treatments and vaccines to try to get ahead of the disease spread. And in an effort to do that, companies are manufacturing doses, even as they are testing drugs, so that they will have product ready to go ASAP.
Grand River Aseptic Manufacturing (GRAM), a small parenteral contract manufacturing company in Grand Rapids, MI, has opened a new 28,000-square-foot facility for its finishing operations, inspection services and storage, as well as housing a substantially larger lab, Contract Pharma reports.
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