PHARMACY

Barr announces launch of generic contraceptives

BY Alaric DeArment

MONTVALE, N.J. Barr Laboratories will launch generic versions of Bayer’s Yasmin and Yaz oral contraceptives before Bayer’s patents expire, Barr announced Tuesday.

Under a supply and licensing agreement with Bayer, Barr will pay an undisclosed amount of money to Bayer in return for receiving generic Yasmin to sell in the U.S. under the Barr Laboratories brand, starting around July 1. Under a similar but separate agreement, Barr can begin marketing and selling Yaz under its brand starting on July 1, 2011.

“We are very pleased to have reached these licensing agreements with Bayer that permit Barr to launch our authorized generic versions of Yasmin and Yaz to patients years before the patents protecting these products are due to expire,” Barr Chairman and chief executive officer Bruce L. Downey said.

Still, Bayer will continue appealing a decision in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey from March 3 that invalidated Bayer’s patent for Yasmin.

Known generically as drospirenone and ethinyl estradiol, Yasmin and Yaz had sales of $1.6 billion in 2007, according to Bayer financial data.

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FDA requests delay on Merck application for cholesterol drugs

BY Alaric DeArment

BOSTON The Food and Drug Administration has recommended that Merck wait until it finishes clinical trials of the cholesterol drugs MK-0524A and MK-0524B before re-filing a marketing application for them, Merck announced Friday.

The FDA rejected Merck’s application for the two drugs in April, and the FDA has advised that it should wait until it receives results from the clinical trial before re-filing.

MK-0524A is a combination of the drug Cordaptive and niacin; MK-0524B combines those ingredients with Zocor. Merck has said it does not plan to seek approval for MK-0524B until it completes the application for MK-0524A.

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Adheris’ Glaser dies at 53

BY DSN STAFF

BURLINGTON, Mass. Matthew Glaser, 53, senior vice president of Professional Services for Adheris, passed away from cancer this past Saturday.

Glaser was a respected leader in the retail pharmacy industry who spent over 30 years working in community, chain, hospital and institutional pharmacy settings. Since 1996, he had dedicated his experience and skills to growing Adheris from a start-up to a leading provider of pharmacy-based patient education and adherence programs. At Adheris, he worked with chain and independent pharmacies, ensuring the delivery of appropriate compliance and adherence programs to their patients.

Prior to his tenure at Adheris, Glaser served as vice president of Pharmacy and Professional Affairs for Brooks Pharmacy, and as assistant vice president of Professional Services and vice president of Managed Care at Hook-SupeRx. Earlier in his career, he spent several years serving in various management positions at CVS.

Glaser held a Bachelor of Science degree in Pharmacy from Northeastern University.

Glaser is survived by his four children; his mother and several siblings and nieces and nephews. Memorial contributions may be made in his memory to the Matthew P. Glaser Memorial Scholarship Fund at the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy, Office of Advancement at 179 Longwood Ave., Boston, MA 02115.

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