PHARMACY

Teva launches prostate cancer treatment generic

BY Alaric DeArment

NORTH WALES, Pa. Teva has introduced a generic version of a drug used to treat prostate cancer, the Israeli drug maker’s U.S. subsidiary announced Monday.

The company has launched bicalutamide tablets USP in the 50-mg strength. The tablets are a generic version of AstraZeneca’s Casodex.

Casodex had global sales of $1.26 billion in 2008, according to AstraZeneca financial data.

In other news, Teva announced Tuesday that it had agreed with Johnson & Johnson division Ortho McNeil Janssen to cease shipments of generic versions of Ortho Tri-Cyclen Lo (norgestimate and ethinyl estradiol) until a patent infringement case concerning the drug begins on July 15.

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CVS Caremark renews distribution agreements

BY Antoinette Alexander

SAN FRANCISCO McKesson has renewed its distribution agreement to supply CVS Caremark with branded and generic drugs, the company announced on Monday.

“CVS Caremark’s decision to renew its agreement with McKesson is reflective of the trusted relationship between our two companies and the value McKesson has delivered to CVS Caremark over the years,” stated Paul Julian, EVP, group president for McKesson. “McKesson’s comprehensive supply chain solutions help CVS Caremark ensure the highest levels of product availability and product integrity, empowering CVS Caremark to provide outstanding pharmaceutical care and further strengthen its competitive position.”

In related news, the retail giant also announced that it has renewed its distribution agreement with Cardinal Health. CVS Caremark said Cardinal Health will supply pharmaceuticals to its national network of retail pharmacies through mid-2013.

“We have a long-standing partnership with CVS Caremark, and we are proud to continue this important relationship,” said George Barrett, vice chairman of Cardinal Health and CEO of the Healthcare Supply Chain Services segment. “The footprint of the agreement is expected to be fundamentally the same as our existing relationship.”

Additional terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

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FDA rejects application of pain-relief drug

BY Alaric DeArment

PALATINE, Ill. The Food and Drug Administration has rejected an approval application for a pain-relief drug.

Acura Pharmaceuticals and King Pharmaceuticals announced that the FDA had issued a letter turning down their application for Acurox (oxycodone HC1, USP and niacin, USP), an immediate-release drug designed to relieve moderate to severe pain.

The companies said the letter expressed concerns about the potential abuse deterrent benefits of the drug. One of the drug’s ingredients, oxycodone, is a opiate-derived controlled substance popular with drug abusers.

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