Thursday, 28 January 2010

India - Indian firms with sterile injectable expertise targeted by Pfizer and Hospira

Pfizer and Hospira gain injectable generics from Indian firms

The Indian pharmaceutical industry has been targeting the US generics market for some years. More recently, a number of companies have successfully gained FDA approval for a growing portfolio of injectable generics. This relatively exclusive segment of the generics market appears to be gaining a higher profile and Hospira and Pfizer have each found a way of increasing market share by doing deals with Indian manufacturers.

At the end of last year, Hospira agreed to acquire Orchid’s generic injectable finished-dosage form pharmaceuticals business for approximately $400 million. The acquisition included Orchid’s beta-lactam antibiotics manufacturing complex (comprising cephalosporin, penicillin and carbapenem facilities) and pharmaceutical R&D facility at Irungattukottai, Chennai, as well as its generic injectable product portfolio and pipeline. In addition, the companies signed a long-term exclusive agreement for Orchid to supply APIs for the acquired generic injectable pharmaceuticals business.

At the beginning of this year, Pfizer and Strides Arcolab entered into a collaboration whereby Pfizer will commercialise off-patent sterile injectable and oral products in the US through its Established Products Business Unit. The companies believe that this is a highly complementary collaboration, which is expected to deliver 40 off-patent products, many of which are oncology therapeutics, to healthcare providers and patients in the US, by joining Pfizer's solid commercial infrastructure with Strides' high-quality manufacturing capabilities. The first of the products commercialised under this collaboration are expected to be launched this year.

Pfizer is obviously keen to work with Indian manufacturers to provide a boost into the injectable generics market. In May 2009, Pfizer entered into a commercialisation agreement with Claris Lifesciences, under which the firm acquired the rights to 15 injectable products that have lost patent protection in major markets, covering a wide range of therapeutic areas including anti-infectives and pain management. The products will be marketed under the Pfizer brand in the US, where the deal is exclusive; Claris will continue to market the products elsewhere.

Further reading - A detailed review of the Indian pharmaceutical market is available from Espicom: The Pharmaceutical Market: India (published January 2010)

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