HEALTH

GSK licenses OTC Xerclear; U.S. market excluded

BY Michael Johnsen

LONDON GlaxoSmithKline on Wednesday announced an exclusive agreement for the over-the-counter rights to Medivir’s cold sore treatment Xerclear (acyclovir and hydrocortisone) in key global markets. The trade name in the U.S. market is Lipsovir, which was approved as a prescription remedy for the prevention of cold sores in July 2009.

Under the terms of the agreement, GSK gains exclusive rights to market and distribute non-prescription Xerclear as part of the Zovirax franchise, across multiple markets, including Europe, Russia, Japan, India, Australia and New Zealand. The agreement excludes North and South America, China, South Korea and Israel.

“This alliance demonstrates GSK’s ongoing commitment to invest in and expand our OTC business.  It will help strengthen our dermatology portfolio across multiple territories including several key emerging markets,” stated John Clarke, president, GSK Consumer Healthcare.

GSK will assume responsibility for funding ongoing and future development of Xerclear in all territories covered by the agreement.

Xerclear is the first and only topical herpes labialis (cold sores) treatment clinically proven to help prevent cold sore lesions appearing, GSK stated.

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Shiff survey: Cardiologists recommend supplements to patients

BY Michael Johnsen

SALT LAKE CITY According to a new national survey commissioned by Schiff Nutrition — and conducted by an independent research firm — an overwhelming majority of cardiologists (91%) have recommended dietary supplements to their patients to support cardiovascular health.

The survey found that three-quarters of cardiologists said that if they had to choose one dietary supplement to specifically support the cardiovascular health, they would choose omega-3 fatty acids, far more so than antioxidants (7%), CoQ-10 (2%) and vitamin E (1%).

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House committee delays second hearing of McNeil recall probe

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON One day following the announcement of a second hearing regarding McNeil Consumer Healthcare recalls, the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform on Tuesday announced the postponement of that second hearing in order “to examine the circumstances surrounding recalls of medicines recently recalled by Johnson & Johnson.”

Anew date has not been set.

Last week, McNeil Consumer Healthcare announced that four lots of Benadryl allergy ultratab tablets (100 count) and one lot of Extra Strength Tylenol rapid-release gels (50 count) would be added to its initial Jan. 15 product recall. This recall, McNeil said, is a follow-up to the product recall because the products were inadvertently omitted from the initial recall action.

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