SANDOZ SANDIMMUNE (CYCLOSPORINE) ACHIEVED LARGEST SALES GROWTH
SANDOZ SANDIMMUNE (CYCLOSPORINE) ACHIEVED LARGEST SALES GROWTH of any Sandoz Rx drug product marketed in the U.S. during 1985, the Swiss pharmaceutical/chemical mfr. indicated in its just released annual report for 1985. The company said that the immunosuppressive agent, which is now available "in all leading countries except Japan," has become the "standard therapy" in organ transplantation. "The level of scientific interest in [Sandimmune] remains high and its use in other indications in currently being explored," the annual report notes. Sandoz is in early clinicals with cyclosporine for the treatment of uveitis, juvenile form diabetes mellitus, multiple sclerosis, and other immunosuppressant uses. The report adds that a new dosage form of Sandimmune was developed "offering greatly improved patient comfort." In addition, Sandoz noted that it has developed an assay kit "to simplify the monitoring of blood levels . . . with beneficial effects for the safe and effective use of this drug." In addition, Sandoz also cited the worldwide market performances of Sandoglobulin, the oral asthma prophylactic Zaditen (ketotifen), the antifungal Exoderil, the anti-Parkinson drug Parlodel, the beta blocker Visken, and Miacalcin (calcitonin). Zaditen is not yet marketed in the U.S.; an NDA for the product is one of at least four NDAs for Sandoz' new chemical entities pending at FDA. Other Sandoz compounds under review at FDA include the antipsychotic Clozaril (clozapine), the NSAID Biarsan (proquazone), and tixocortol for ulcerative colitis. An NDA for a one-a-day dosage form of Mellaril is also pending approval at FDA. Commenting on drugs in the pipeline, the annual report observes that "excellent progress was also made with the development of Sandostatin, a growth-hormone inhibitor for the treatment of acromegaly and certain types of hormone-producing tumor of the gastrointestinal tract." Sandoz said that the first submission for marketing approval "is expected to be in the very near future." The Sandoz pharmaceutical division reported sales of $1.9 bil. in 1985, a 13.3% increase over 1984 levels. The division's R&D budget was $252.7 mil. or 13.3% of sales. Pharmaceuticals made up the largest segment of the Sandoz Group's business, accounting for 46% of the $4.1 bil. in total sales, followed by chemicals at 25%, nutrition products at 13%, seeds at 9% and agricultural products at 7%. The group recorded net earnings of $257 mil., up 28.7% from 1984. Nearly 31% of the group's sales, or $1.3 bil., were in the U.S. The Sandoz parent company, which primarily supplies the various operating divisions of the Sandoz Group, reported that its sales increased 7.2% in 1985 to $984 mil., while net earnings jumped 20.6% to $65.7 mil. [EDITORS' NOTE: Dollar figures are based on the Dec. 31, 1985 exchange rate of one Swiss franc equals .4859 dollars.]
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