Pharmaceutical Patent Expiration 2017

This year, some pharmaceuticals company should be worried about the impending loss in patent protection in a number of medical drugs in the US. Big players, including Eli Lilly, Pfizer, Takeda, Bristol-Myers Squibb, and Gilead are about to go on a head-to-head battle with generic rivals who are planning their way to get their hands on large portions of the pharmaceutical industry.

Last year, large pharmaceuticals brought more than $10 billion in earnings in the US by selling drugs for various health conditions, including multiple sclerosis, HIV, erectile dysfunction, and cancer. However, this time, they will face an intense battle with generic companies who are aiming to offer the same kind of medicines at much cheaper prices.

Loss of market exclusivity depends on a number of factors, such as add-on patents and legal settlements. Still, this 2017, a number of drugs will lose their patent as result of patent litigation or settlements.

Topping the list of such loss is the MS med Copaxone 40 by Teva. With US sales of $3.48 billion, the company is currently facing its own battles with generic companies in patent court. Unfortunately, it was off to a bad start given the multiple patent losses that it incurred last year. This 2017, should Teva decide to launch generics, they will have to suffer a $1 billion to $1.3 billion loss in sales.

However, there is still some hope for Teva. The FDA recently released a warning letter that was supposed to delay production of generic version of Copaxone.

Based on statistical data, when a number of generic drugs penetrate the pharmaceutical industry, branded medicines are bound to lose 90% of their sales. And the problem gets worse with drugs that have multiple generic competitions. Large pharmaceutical companies will have to face generic versions that are 80% to 85% cheaper than their branded drugs. One good example is Biosimilar, a starting company who started offering drugs at prices that are 15% cheaper than their branded counterparts.

Another drug that will probably go down the drain is Eli Lilly’s Cialis. From the $1.42 billion in sales in 2016, this drug is expected to only bring in $55 million in earnings in 2022. Though this erectile dysfunction drug is still doing good at the moment, the sales are expected to go winding down in the near future.

Eli Lilly’s Strattera and Effient are also in trouble this year. Strattera currently holds the 10th place in the top 10 sales threshold with $535 million in sales in US. However, by 2022, this number is expected to dwindle thanks to the increasing number of competitors. As a result, Eli Lilly will possibly discontinue promoting the above mentioned drugs, and a number of workers are also in danger of losing their jobs.

Pfizer’s Viagra and Takeda’s multiple myeloma med Velcade both earned $1 billion last year in the US. However, Viagra will now be competing with products coming from Teva and Mylan. By 2022, Viagra’s sales is expected to go down by $188 million.

On the other hand, after losing its patent protection in November, Velcade is expected to face a staggering $1 billion loss in sales. It will have to compete with generic versions manufactured by Fresenius Teva.

Meanwhile, Bristol-Myer’s HIV drug, Sustiva, just lost its patent protection last December. It will possibly face generic versions that will be manufactured by Teva, Emcure, Strides, and Aurobindo.

The next one in grave danger is Novartis’ Sandostatin LAR, a drug for treatment of acromegaly and diarrhea associated with specific tumors. Though it will lose its patent in December, making a generic version of the drug can be quite complex, so generic companies will have to try harder to topple Sandostatin off the market.

The other drugs in the top-10-in-sales list include Novo Nordisk’s growth hormone, Norditropin SimpleXx, Gilead’s hepatitis B/HIV antiviral Viread, and Pfizer’s antidepressant Pristiq.

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