Blockbusters on their way to generic-land

We're going to quote ourselves here: Some $23 billion in drugs go off patent in 2008, some of them the biggest names in pharma. Which, pray tell? The following blockbuster or almost-blockbuster meds are expected to lose exclusivity in at least one market worldwide this year:

  • Fosamax, Merck, 2007 sales of $2.9 to $3.1 billion
  • Risperdal, Johnson & Johnson, 2006 sales of $4.1 billion
  • Topamax, Johnson & Johnson, first nine months of 2007 sales at $1.8 billion
  • Lamictal, GlaxoSmithKline, sales of nearly $2 billion in the 12 months ended Sept. 30
  • Depakote, Abbott Laboratories, over $1 billion in first nine months of 2007
  • Camptosar, Pfizer, $903 million in 2006 sales

This is nothing compared with the off-the-charts expirations in 2010. But it might not be all the big drugs that fall this year. Several mammoth products face generic challenges--Wyeth's Effexor XR and Protonix, Novartis' Gleevec, and AstraZeneca's Crestor, to name a few. Timber!

- read about Wyeth's Effexor problems
- get more on the challenge to Gleevec's patent
- here's more on the patent challenge to Crestor