Amid all the talk of job losses, GlaxoSmithKline’s fourth-quarter financials revealed a 4% decline in pharmaceutical sales to £5.80 billion, hit again by generic competition and lower revenues of the diabetes drug Avandia.

Sales of Avandia (rosiglitazone) were down 24% to £147 million, while generic competition in the USA hit its central nervous system drugs hard. Revenues from Paxil/Seroxat (paroxetine) fell 21% to $154 million, while another antidepressant, Wellbutrin (bupropion), slumped 63% to £66 million.

The epilepsy drug Lamictal (lamotrigine) fell 57% to £177 million, while ReQuip (ropinirole), for Parkinson’s disease and restless legs syndrome, was down 53% to £56 million. Sales of Imigran/Imitrex (sumatriptan) for migraine fell 34% to £161 million.

On a more positive note, Advair/Seretide (salmeterol and fluticasone) for asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease grew 8% to £1.24 billion, while GSK's vaccine sales climbed 8% to £796 million. There were also strong performances for newer products such as Avodart (dutasteride) for enlarged prostate (+19% to £120 million), the osteoporosis drug Boniva/Bonviva ( ibandronic acid; +34% to £237 million), the bloodthinner Arixtra (fondaparinux; +53% to £170 million) and the cardiovascular agent Coreg CR (extended-release carvediliol; +73% to £165 million).