PHARMACY

FDA approves generic version of Trusoft ocular hypertension treatment

BY Alaric DeArment

AMITYVILLE, N.Y. The Food and Drug Administration has approved Hi-Tech Pharmacal’s application for a generic version of Merck’s Trusopt ophthalmic solution.

The drug, known generically as dorzolamide ophthalmic solution, in 2 percent strength, is used to treat elevated intraocular pressure in patients with ocular hypertension or open-angel glaucoma. The branded version had sales of $45 million during the 12 months ending in June, according to IMS Health.

The company also announced the FDA’s approval of its dorzolamide and timolol ophthalmic solution, a generic version of Merck’s Cosopt used to treat the same disease as Trusopt. Cosopt had sales of $342 million in the 12 months ending in June.

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Medimetriks announces agreement to market treatments for impetigo

BY Alaric DeArment

FAIRFIELD, N.J. Medimetriks Pharmaceuticals has entered into a licensing agreement with Perrigo for U.S. Marketing rights to Centany Ointment and two prescription keratolytic brands, Medimetriks announced Tuesday.

Johnson & Johnson’s OrthoNeutrogena professional division previously marketed Centany, which is used for treating impetigo caused by Straphylococcus aureas and Streptococcus pyogenes bacteria. The Food and Drug Administration approved it in 2002.

The two keratolytic brands are urea-based therapies for treating severe dry skin.

“We are happy to have a partner that brings such a record of success in the branded pharmaceutical business,” Perrigo executive vice president Sharon Kochan said in a statement. “We believe the licensed products are in good hands, given Medimetriks management’s proven abilities in building a successful business in the dermatology and podiatry markets.”

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Few healthcare providers receive adequate training, tools to help patients quit smoking

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK A new study suggests that few healthcare workers have sufficient training in smoking cessation to help patients quit.

The study, presented Monday at the annual meeting of the American College of Chest Physicians in Philadelphia, found that 87 to 93 percent of healthcare providers receive less than five hours of smoking cessation training, while less than 6 percent know the governmental Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality’s guidelines for treating people with tobacco dependence.

The study surveyed 600 people working in health care, including physicians, nurse practitioners, pharmacists, social workers and students, and divided them into prescribers and non-prescribers.

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