Another boon for Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, the world’s biggest generics company, after it revealed a huge jump in sales of its star branded offering, the multiple sclerosis treatment Copaxone (glatiramer acetate). Revenues reached a record $353 million in the second quarter of the year ended June 30, up 22%, reaffirming its position as the fastest growing MS therapy worldwide and Teva’s biggest drug.
In the crucial US market, IMS data reveal Copaxone has a captive audience of almost 34% of total prescriptions written for MS drugs, and this dominant position is showing no signs of abating with its slice of the new prescription pie put at 35%. Overall, US sales in the second quarter of 2006 increased 19% over the second quarter of 2005 to $231 million.
And, as has been the pattern for a long time, Copaxone continued to cut swathes through other offerings in Europe, where it is still the fastest growing MS therapy, jumping 26% over the second quarter of 2005 to reap revenues of $123 million.
Teva, which released the Copaxone data to coincide with Sanofi-Aventis’ results (Sanofi-Aventis co-promotes Copaxone in North America), is due to unveil its full second quarter figures on August 8.
If the Israeli firm has its way, Copaxone will continue to be a market leader for some time to come: the firm has an extensive product lifecycle management plan in place and most recently announced a major new clinical trial looking at the potential benefits of doubling the dose of Copaxone on preventing relapses and cutting lesions. However, not everything has gone so well and Teva – alongside partner Lundbeck – were recently forced to reign in development of an oral version of Copaxone after disappointing results from Phase II trials.