Abilify Maintena

Drug: Abilify Maintena
Companies: Otsuka Pharmaceutical and Lundbeck
Use: Schizophrenia
Amount spent on doctor payments: $5 million

Otsuka Pharmaceutical is staring down the barrel at a patent loss on blockbuster Abilify, and the drugmaker is counting on a long-acting version of the med, Abilify Maintena, to bolster sales in its wake. Abilify accounted for a full one-quarter of Otsuka's sales in 2013, leaving Abilify Maintena with some big shoes to fill. But analysts set peak numbers for the longer-acting drug between $500 million and $1 billion.

Funneling money into Abilify Maintena marketing--with physician speaking programs, sales rep detailing and advertising--could help Otsuka and partner Lundbeck get a leg up on rivals, as Eli Lilly ($LLY) and Johnson & Johnson ($JNJ) forge ahead with their own long-acting antipsychotic meds. Lilly's long-acting version of its blockbuster Zyprexa, Zyprexa Relprevv, continues to bring in sales after the original pill went generic. Meanwhile, J&J is chasing FDA approval for a three-month dosing formula of schizophrenia med Invega Sustenna, which could potentially give the franchise a bigger boost. -- Emily Wasserman (email | Twitter)

For more:
Special Reports: The top 10 patent losses of 2015 - Abilify | The 10 best-selling drugs of 2013 - Abilify
J&J eyes long-acting boost for Invega franchise with quick FDA look at new formula
Forest's antipsychotic ambitions thwarted by FDA delay
Lundbeck, Otsuka's new Abilify Maintena to face entrenched rivals

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Abilify Maintena