Abbott Laboratories has posted healthy first-quarter sales at its pharmaceuticals division, driven again by the performance of its anti-inflammatory blockbuster Humira, though earnings fell on restructuring costs.
Net income was down 13.3% to $864 million, hit by charges of $513 million, associated primarily with the acquisition of Solvay Pharmaceuticals and cost reduction initiatives. Group sales were up 17.4% to $9.04 billion, and Humira (adalimumab), which is approved for indications covering rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease and psoriasis, contributed $1.65 billion, up 17.8%.
As for the company’s lipids franchise, TriCor (fenofibrate) and TriLipix (fenofibric acid) had sales of $372 million, up 27.7%, while Niaspan (niacin) brought in $226 million, a rise 10.6%. Of Abbott’s other products, the prostate cancer therapy Lupron (leuprolide) was up 7.1% to $184 million, while revenues from the HIV drug Kaletra (lopinavir/ritonavir) plunged 15.0% to $248 million. Sales of the hypothyroid medication Synthroid (levothyroxine) were up 17.5% to $145 million.
What Abbott refers to as ‘established pharmaceuticals’, which include branded generics outside of the USA, brought in $1.30 billion, up 80.7%. These include the contribution from Solvay and the recently-purchased generics business of India's Piramal Healthcare; growth was particularly strong in Russia, India and China.