PHARMACY

Pfizer seeks continued Lipitor preferred standing as generic competition increases

BY Drew Buono

FEASTERVILLE, Pa. Pfizer is committed to keeping Lipitor as a “preferred” drug on American drug plans. With that in mind, the company is going to use an aggressive promotional program rivaling that of a new drug during its launch phase.

Pfizer is offering more flexible contracts and rebate programs to get Lipitor back into the preferred side of health care companies’ drug lists. Lipitor does, though, have extensive competition with drugs like generic Zocor (simvastatin), Crestor and Vytorin.

“Managed markets access and reimbursement are critical to every brand’s success, and Pfizer seems aggressively committed to keeping Lipitor’s market share healthy for as long as possible in the product’s life cycle,” said Sharon Bender, Executive Director, Strategic Initiatives at Cognet~X, publishers of the PAR-Rx Report.

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PHARMACY

Lilly, Takeda terminate contract

BY Drew Buono

JAPAN Eli Lilly Japan and Takeda Pharmaceuticals have terminated an agreement to co-develop and co-market ruboxistaurin mesylate.

Ruboxistaurin mesylate is used to treat diabetic macular edema and diabetic peripheral neuropathy. The companies said that after looking at the overall results, the trials did not meet the criteria for Phase III studies and therefore they have agreed to terminate the contract.

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Patent office announces final rule on claims

BY Drew Buono

WASHINGTON The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has issued a new rule that will change how many claims patent applications may contain, as well as how many continuing applications applicants may file.

The new rule requires that any third or subsequent continuing application that is a continuing application or a continuation-in-part application, and any second or subsequent request for continued examination in an application family, be filed to obtain consideration of an amendment, argument, or evidence, and be supported by a showing as to why the amendment, argument, or evidence sought to be entered could not have been previously submitted.

The revised rules also require an applicant to file an examination support document that covers all of the claims in an application if the application contains more than five independent claims or more than twenty-five total claims.

The new rule will go into effect on Nov. 1.

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