PHARMACY

Dr. Reddy’s generic Xyzal hits market

BY Alaric DeArment

HYDERABAD, India — Indian generic drug maker Dr. Reddy’s Labs has launched a generic treatment for seasonal allergies, the company said Tuesday.

Dr. Reddy’s announced the launch of levocetirizine tablets in the 5-mg strength. The drug is a generic version of UCB’s and Sanofi-Aventis’ Xyzal.

Levocetirizine had sales of about $238 million during the 12-month period ended in September 2010, according to IMS Health.

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Datamonitor: Global biosimilars market to reach nearly $4 billion by 2015

BY Alaric DeArment

LONDON — Any manufacturer that has the necessary resources and still is hesitating about whether to tap into biosimilars might want to go ahead and do it, if projections by British market analysis firm Datamonitor come true.

The firm released a report Monday showing that the global biosimilars market, whose value stood at $243 million in 2010, will increase to $3.7 billion by 2015.

“With the market shares of first-generation biologic drugs stagnating or declining, biosimilar monoclonal antibodies and second-generation biosimilars represent a high-value proposition for biosimilar manufacturers and key drivers for future growth,” Datamonitor healthcare analyst Mark Hollis said.

“However, despite the introduction of biosimilar approval pathways in the [United States, European Union] and Japan, the growing use of biologics and the need for more cost-effective treatments, there remain large numbers of barriers to achieving commercial success in developed markets,” Hollis added.

More than 30 biologics with sales of $51 billion will lose patent protection between this year and 2015, thus opening opportunities for biosimilar manufacturers. Currently, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, Sandoz and Hospira are the largest manufacturers of biosimilars — primarily for the European Union — though such generic drug companies as Mylan and such branded drug makers as Pfizer and Merck have expressed interest as well. Datamonitor’s report forecasted that the market in the United States, Europe and Japan would remain dominated by existing biosimilar manufacturers, with a few branded companies joining in as well.

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RCEC to bring pharmacists, NPs together on collaborative care track

BY Alaric DeArment

ORLANDO, Fla. — Studies have indicated that the best people to get patients to adhere to their medication therapies are store pharmacists, while the second-best people are nurses. Thus, it’s only natural that getting nurses and pharmacists to collaborate will further improve adherence. The collaborative care track that The Drug Store News Group will introduce at the Retail Clinician Education Congress in August is a step in that direction.

Collaborative Care Day, which will take place on Aug. 2 at the Gaylord Palms in Orlando, Fla., will provide up to six continuing education credits to attendees. It will include sessions with nurse practitioners and pharmacists on working together to improve health outcomes, common respiratory ailments, pediatric pharmacology, drug interactions — especially involving over-the-counter medications — hypertension and Type 2 diabetes.

“When we consider the growing notion of a medical home and the role of community pharmacy, pharmacists and retail nurse practitioners are an invaluable team to help patients improve and manage patient health,” Drug Store News publisher Wayne Bennett said. “We know that pharmacists are essential providers in helping patients manage their drug regimens and drug-adherence protocols. We also know that retail nurse practitioners provide the community with an important access point for not only treating minor illness and injuries, but also vaccinations and other health-condition monitoring services like high blood pressure, cholesterol, and diabetes screenings and assessments.”

“The first-ever Collaborative Care Day as part of the 2011 Retail Clinician Education Congress will bring both these healthcare professionals together in a positive networking and educational environment,” Bennett added.

Collaborative Care Association executive director Tine Hansen-Turton also is enthusiastic about the track. “We know the best health care in this country is provided by a team,” she said. “We are excited to introduce the collaborative care track at the Retail Clinician Education Congress, which is a hallmark of how health care will be provided in the future.”

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