Shire Pharmaceuticals has posted a very strong set of results for the second quarter, with its old and new attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder treatments and rare disease drugs driving growth.

Net income came in at $205.5 million, up 28%, while revenues increased 25% to $1.06 billion. Turnover was driven by the ADHD drug Vyvanse (lisdexamfetamine dimesylate), which grew 26% to $185.9 million, and its now-genericised predecessor Adderall XR (mixed amphetamine salts). The latter brought in $146.9 million, up 83%. Another ADHD drug, Intuniv (guanfacine), had sales of $59.6 million (+16%).

Shire's rare diseases portfolio also fared particularly well, with Replagal (agalsidase alfa) for Fabry disease rocketing 46% to $119.9 million. Vpriv (velaglucerase alfa) for Gaucher's disease, brought in $63.3 million, up 121%, and both these treatments are still benefitting from Genzyme Corp's manufacturing problems with its rival therapies Cerezyme (imiglucerase) and Fabrazyme (agalsidase beta). The Hunter Syndrome therapy Elaprase (idursulfase) rose 28% to $127.8 million.

As for Shire's other products, Pentasa (mesalamine) climbed 9% to $65.8 million, and the firm’s newer ulcerative colitis drug Lialda/Mezavant brought in $99.2 million, a leap of 43%.

Chief executive Angus Russell said that "as well as growing our existing business, we’re continuing to invest in our portfolio for the future". He added that "in our pipeline we’re generating data for new indications and new markets, in addition to developing new proprietary technology platforms".

The Shire boss also noted that the company has completed the acquisition of the USA's Advanced BioHealing for $750 million in cash. That deal gives the company an "opportunity to build an important business in the promising field of regenerative medicine", he said, as it gets access to Dermograft, a regenerative bio-engineered skin substitute already used for the treatment of diabetic foot ulcers.

Analysts were very impressed and Navid Malik at Matrix Group said that the "outstanding set of results sets Shire as the best growth business within the pharmaceutical sector". He said this reflects "a highly-confident management team, with a high-growth portfolio backed up by a deep and rich pipeline".__

Mr Malik expects further growth in the ADHD market as Shire leverages Vyvanse into Europe along with new indications (non-ADHD), and Intuniv "heads towards a European filing with a potential ten-year market exclusivity period". He noted that Shire's costs will rise 20% this year to keep the business growing and said that its entry into the regenerative medicine field through the Advanced BioHealing buy is a good move, especially as "diabetes is undergoing an explosion in growth rates, and Dermagraft competes directly into this segment".