Takeda Pharmaceutical - 10 Largest U.S. Patent Losses

Drug: Actos
Company: Takeda Pharmaceutical
2010 U.S. sales: $3.35 billion/$4.3 billion global
Impact: 51.82% of U.S. revenue
Patent expires: August 2012

It's a good thing Takeda is the biggest drugmaker in Japan. When it loses U.S. patent coverage for its top-selling drug Actos, it faces a drain on half its sales here. But Actos' $3.35 billion in U.S. revenue is only 18% of the company's global sales. That's no easy hole to fill, but it's a lot easier to face than 51%.

Unfortunately, new safety questions won't help Takeda hang on to market share. Evidence about a potential link to bladder cancer prompted France and Germany to pull the drug briefly until European regulators called for updated warnings about the cancer risk. The FDA had already asked Takeda to strengthen cautionary language on Actos' U.S. label.

Takeda doesn't appear to be looking to the U.S. or Europe to help backfill its sales. The company recently bought the Swiss drugmaker Nycomed, largely for its distribution and expertise in emerging markets. It's scouting for small acquisitions in India. And it's building up its business in China. In the meantime, it's warning investors the next few years are likely to be lean.

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Takeda Pharmaceutical - 10 Largest U.S. Patent Losses