PHARMACY

Octapharma USA hires former Baxter BioScience executive

BY Alaric DeArment

HOBOKEN, N.J. — Drug maker Octapharma USA has appointed David Holliday as VP commercial development, the company said.

Octapharma USA, the U.S. subsidiary of Swiss drug maker Octapharma AG, said Holliday will be responsible for U.S. product marketing, sales, commercial activities and coordination with global portfolio development initiatives. The company manufactures drugs, such as the immune deficiency treatment Octagam (immune globulin intravenous [human] 5%) and the Von Willebrand disease treatment Wilate (Von Willebrand factor and coagulation factor VIII complex [human]).

Holliday most recently served as VP global marketing operations and hemophilia for Baxter BioScience and has more than 24 years of industry leadership experience, Octapharma said.


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PHARMACY

Prasco to distribute authorized generic drug for seizures, pain

BY Alaric DeArment

CINCINNATI — Prasco Labs will act as the distributor for an authorized generic version of a Shire anticonvulsant drug, the company said Thursday.

Prasco announced that it had partnered with Shire to distribute carbamazepine extended-release capsules in the 100-mg, 200-mg and 300-mg strengths. The drug is an authorized generic version of Carbatrol, used to treat certain types of seizures and pain.

Authorized generics are branded drugs sold under their generic names at a reduced price.


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Amylin outlines diabetes strategy for 2012

BY Alaric DeArment

SAN DIEGO — A special focus on its diabetes franchise will define Amylin Pharmaceuticals’ corporate strategy, the company’s chief executive said at a recent conference sponsored by J.P. Morgan.

Speaking at the 30th annual J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference in San Francisco, Amylin president and CEO Daniel Bradbury laid out the company’s plans for the launch of the injected Type 2 diabetes medication Bydureon (exenatide), a long-acting version of the drug Byetta. Amylin originally marketed Byetta and planned to market Bydureon under a partnership with Indianapolis-based Eli Lilly, but the companies terminated their agreement to develop exenatide products in November after Lilly started a diabetes drug collaboration with German drug maker Boehringer Ingelheim. Under the agreement to terminate the Amylin-Lilly collaboration, Amylin paid $250 million upfront to Lilly and agreed to share 15% of revenues from sales of exenatide products.

Bydureon is under review by the Food and Drug Administration, which is expected to decide whether or not to approve the drug by Jan. 28.

Bradbury listed Amylin’s priorities as launching Bydureon; securing a partner outside the United States to develop exenatide; maximizing the value of Byetta and Symlin (pramlintide acetate); advancing the development programs for the investigational drug metreleptin, as well as once-weekly and once-monthly formulations of exenatide; and a continued focus on financial discipline

"We have a truly extraordinary opportunity at Amylin as we embark on a year in which we are prepared to deliver the first ever once-weekly therapy in the U.S. for patients with Type 2 diabetes — which we believe could change the way people with diabetes manage their disease," Bradbury said. "With the addition of Bydureon in the U.S., we will solidify our position as a driving force in the fight against this rising global epidemic."


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