It's a tale of two statin drugs and their attempts to keep market share--or build it, as the case may be. Pfizer rolled out a new version of its Lipitor copay discount program, and this time, it applies to patients covered via certain U.S. government programs.
Insurance giant Cigna inked a deal with AstraZeneca to allow its brand-name statin drug Crestor to be prescribed without prior authorization--provided a computer model says a patient needs it.
AstraZeneca has won FDA approval for its new prescription strength fish oil therapy for artery-clogging fats, but don't look for it to help much in its nascent effort to convince investors that its bright prospects should make them steer clear of Pfizer's takeover pitch. This drug is headed into a crowded field that now includes a low-priced generic competitor.
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.
So is Lipitor or Crestor causing you to have muscle aches? The answer is no, according to a new meta-analysis of the side effects of the cholesterol-lowering drugs.
New rules for prescribing statin drugs could double the number of people taking them--or not. They could help AstraZeneca pump up sales of its high-powered Crestor--or not. What they will do--most likely--is undercut Merck's cholesterol drugs Vytorin and Zetia, along with AbbVie's fenofibrate-based lipid meds TriCor and Trilipix.
A new study shows that payments do influence doctors' behavior. The average amount that flows from pharma to physician is about $1,700 per. Still, doctors are swayed by free dinners and speaking fees, the study finds, with prescriptions rising along with payments.
AstraZeneca's first-quarter sales dropped by 12%. Core earnings fell by 21%. Neither number approached Bristol-Myers Squibb's scary declines. Both companies are suffering big-time hits to their top drugs, because of generic competition. AstraZeneca's earnings actually beat expectations. So why are AstraZeneca analysts less positive about the company's results? It's all about the future.
AstraZeneca has wrapped up another Crestor patent fight. Two generics makers, Actavis and Egis, admitted that the cholesterol drug's patent is valid. And in return, AstraZeneca agreed to share the market in May 2016, 67 days before its pediatric exclusivity expires.
AstraZeneca ($AZN) chalked up a win in its fight to preserve Crestor's patent protection. A U.S. Appeals Court upheld the cholesterol drug's key patent, in a ruling that would stave off generic competition till 2016.