AbbVie re-ramps Humira TV spending to run away with September's No. 1 spot


As the FDA worked up to its approval of the first Humira biosimilar last month, AbbVie put the pedal to the floor on Humira TV ad spending. AbbVie spent $32.3 million in the month of September, marketing Humira across three indications, according to data from real-time TV ad tracker That’s $11 million more than the next most-promoted product on TV for the month, Pfizer’s Lyrica, on which the pharma giant doled out $21.4 million.

Many had anticipated that the FDA would pass through Amgen’s Humira biosimilar, Amjevita, following a unanimous FDA panel recommendation in June. However, AbbVie is far from conceding the market. It has sued Amgen for patent infringement, and as the lawsuit wends its way through the courts, AbbVie has asked to have the Amgen biosimilar blocked from the market until the case is settled.


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Back on the list this month, in the No. 3 and 4 spending spots, were J&J's Invokana and Sunovion Pharmaceutical’s Latuda. Latuda rejoined the list with a new creative centered on a woman (actress portrayal) who continues to press the Latuda message that differentiates it from other depression treatments, as specifically a treatment for bipolar depression.

New to the list this month is Shire’s Eyelove disease awareness campaign for chronic dry eye, which comes two months after the FDA approved its branded dry eye treatment Xiidra. Popular actress Jennifer Aniston stars in the most frequently run TV ad among three in the awareness campaign. Two other women talk about similar symptoms in other ads.

Also rejoining the top 10 list for September at No. 5 was Eli Lilly's erectile dysfunction treatment Cialis, on which the Indianapolis drugmaker spent $11.8 million for the month. Chief competitor Pfizer's Viagra was not far behind at No. 9 and $10.1 million in spending for the month. Viagra’s TV ads focused on its new, convenient, single-pack travel packaging, while Lilly promoted new creative around Cialis' daily use. The creative brought back a real couple in adjoining bathtubs holding hands as one of Lilly's happy couple shots.

1. Humira
Movement: Stayed same
What is it? AbbVie anti-inflammatory drug
Total estimated spending: $32.3M (up from $26.9M in August)
Number of spots: 6 (2 for arthritis, 2 for ulcerative colitis/Crohn's, 2 for psoriasis)
Biggest-ticket ad: "Go Further” for arthritis (est. $8.1M)

2. Lyrica
Movement: Stayed same
What is it? Pfizer seizure and pain drug
Total estimated spending: $21.4M (down from $26.2M in August)
Number of spots: 6
Biggest-ticket ad: "Mothers" (est. $8M)

3. Invokana
Movement: Not in top 10 last month
What is it? J&J’s SGLT2 diabetes drug
Total estimated spending: $17.8M
Biggest-ticket ad: “Turn Things Around”

4. Latuda
Movement: Not in top 10 last month
What is it? Sunovion Pharmaceutical anti-psychotic
Total estimated spending: $15.9M
Number of spots: 2
Biggest-ticket ad: "Maya's Story" (est. $11.8M)

5. Cialis
Not in top 10 last month
What is it? Eli Lilly erectile dysfuntion treatment
Total estimated spending: $11.8M
Number of spots: 4
Biggest-ticket ad: "A Moment Turns Romantic" (est. $6.5 million)

6. Xeljanz XR
Movement: Down from No. 3
What is it? Pfizer’s second-line, oral rheumatoid arthritis therapy
Total estimated spending: $11.2M (down from $21.9M in August)
Number of spots: 2
Biggest-ticket Ad: "Mother” (est. $6.1M)

7. Trintellix
Stayed same
What is it? Takeda and Lundbeck antidepressant
Total estimated spending: $10.6M (down from $10.7 in August)
Number of spots: 2
Biggest-ticket Ad: "More than Sadness: Hers” (est. $8.2M)

8. Eliquis
Movement:  Down from No. 6
What is it? Pfizer and Bristol-Myers Squibb anticoagulant
Total estimated spending: $10.5M (down from $11.9M in August)
Number of spots: 2
Biggest-ticket ad: "DVT and PE Blood Clots" (est. $6M)

9. Viagra
Movement: Not in top 10 last month
What is it? Pfizer erectile dysfunction treatment
Total estimated spending: $10.1M
Number of spots: 3
Biggest-ticket ad: "Single Packs: Overpack" (est. $7M)

10. Eyelove
Movement: New to the list
What is it? Shire’s dry eye disease awareness campaign
Total estimated spending: $9.9M
Number of spots: 3
Biggest-ticket Ad: "Jennifer Aniston” (est. $7.6M)

Related Articles:
Amgen's Humira biosim, Amjevita, passes FDA milestone on long road to market
Shire snags eye-drop 'addicted' Jennifer Aniston as new dry eye spokeswoman

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