Merck's diabetes drugs have found a new champion in Sun Pharmaceutical Industries. As part of a strategic partnership between the two companies, Sun will market Januvia and Janumet under different brand names in India. The deal comes two weeks after the companies announced their plans to team up in a joint venture.
Diabetes drugs are expected to grow fast in the developing world, as fast-growing countries experience some of the pitfalls of economic growth. As India, for instance, has developed a stronger middle class, the incidence of chronic diseases common in the U.S. and Europe has grown, diabetes included.
Merck's managing director in India, K.G. Ananthakrishnan, said that increasing access to the company's diabetes drugs "is an urgent need, given the high disease burden of type 2 diabetes in India and the role of these drugs in helping to address the same." Sun says its strong relationships with family doctors and diabetes specialists will expand the reach of the two drugs.