12 Stories

As Lipitor Patent Expires, Pfizer Fights to Keep Users

Cholesterol drug's price should be coming down soon

(Newser) - The biggest-selling drug of all time—Lipitor—is now available for production in generic form as Pfizer's patent on the cholesterol-lowering pill expired today, reports AFP . It's such a huge money-maker for Pfizer, however, that the company is rolling out all kinds of discounts and incentives to keep... More »

Pfizer Hopes to Sell Lipitor Over the Counter

But FDA is leery about letting people use statins on their own

(Newser) - Pfizer hopes to sell an over-the-counter version of its popular cholesterol drug Lipitor, the Wall Street Journal reports. But first it will have to convince a skeptical FDA, which is wary about letting people use such statins without a doctor's supervision. Pfizer loses the patent on Lipitor in November,... More »

Pfizer Offers Free Lipitor, Viagra to Jobless

70 drugs available to those who lost jobs since Jan. 1

(Newser) - Pfizer is unveiling a new program that will let people who have lost their jobs and health insurance keep taking some of its medications—including Lipitor and Viagra—for free for up to a year. The world’s biggest drugmaker will provide more than 70 of its prescription drugs free... More »

Novartis Acquires Plavix Rival

Novartis acquires worldwide rights from a San Francisco biopharmaceutical firm

(Newser) - Novartis AG will pay a San Francisco biopharmaceutical company $75 million—with the potential for an additional $500 million—for the worldwide rights to an experimental anticlotting drug the Swiss drug firm hopes will rival Plavix, reports the Wall Street Journal. Market leader Plavix rang up $8.22 billion in... More »

Pfizer to Can 800 Researchers

Company must cut R&D spending ahead of Lipitor patent expiration

(Newser) - Pfizer will eliminate the jobs of up to 800 researchers in 2009, starting today, the Wall Street Journal reports. The pharmaceutical giant is attempting to cut costs ahead of a $30 billion reduction in revenue expected in 2011 when its patent on the popular cholesterol drug Lipitor expires. But the... More »

2008 Hall of Infamy Inductees

A month-by-month gallery of the year's most ignominious figures

(Newser) - As we look back at the great people who made their mark this year, let us not forget to document the schlubby, the sneaky, and the just plain criminal. Vanity Fair has done the legwork, rounding up a month-by-month rogue's gallery. Some highlights:
  • January: Rudy Giuliani's Florida strategy was
... More »

Deal Delays Generic Lipitor Until 2011

Pact with Indian drug maker stands to net billions for Pfizer

(Newser) - Pfizer has struck a deal with an Indian generic drug maker to delay a cheaper version of Lipitor in the US until November 2011. The agreement limiting generic versions of the cholesterol-lowering drug will translate into billions more in profits for Pfizer, the New York Times reports. Lipitor, the world's... More »

Congress to Probe 'Misleading' Drug Ads

Cholesterol, anemia drugs in spotlight

(Newser) - A congressional panel will examine three ad campaigns as part of a move to tighten regulations on drug companies' direct-to-consumer marketing, the Wall Street Journal reports. The committee will focus on ads for cholesterol drugs Vytorin and Lipitor, and anemia drug Procrit, which has been promoted as an anti-fatigue drug... More »

Pfizer Pulls Lipitor Ads After Probe

Critics accused pharma giant of inflating doctor's CV

(Newser) - Pfizer said today it will drop its ads for cholesterol drug Lipitor due to criticisms of the TV spots, the New York Times reports. US lawmakers recently probed whether the campaign had inflated the credentials of artificial heart developer Dr. Robert Jarvik. "The way in which we presented Dr.... More »

Prices Jump for Top Drugs

Drug giants collect now against expected future losses

(Newser) - Drug companies have slapped a series of huge price hikes on some prescription drugs ahead of drug patent expirations, the Wall Street Journal reports. GlaxoSmithKline has raised the price of antidepressant Wellbutrin 44.5%, while Sanofi-Aventis hiked Ambien's price 70%. Wholesale prices for the top 50 drugs increased an average... More »

Big Pharma Faces Big Plunge

Profits will drop as patents expire, and chemical-based therapies are eclipsed by biotech

(Newser) - Patent protections on some of the pharmaceutical industry's best-selling drugs, like Lipitor, Plavix and Singulair, are due to expire in the next several years, and drug manufacturers have little in the pipeline to replace them. The drug companies will lose billions—as much as half their combined revenue—to generic... More »

Battle Brews in Pharma's Market

Pfizer launches attack on generic drug that threatens Lipitor's dominance

(Newser) - Pfizer is trying to stave off its own heart attack now that its flagship cholesterol-lowering drug Lipitor faces stiff competition from a cheaper generic. Lipitor is still patent-protected, but a very similar drug called Zocor isn't, and since a generic version called simvastatin hit the market, many doctors and insurers... More »

12 Stories