LYPHOMED TARGETS HOSPITAL GENERIC PRODUCT LINE TOTALING 1,000 ITEMS
LYPHOMED TARGETS HOSPITAL GENERIC PRODUCT LINE TOTALING 1,000 ITEMS in the 1990-1991 time frame, up from the current line of 370-plus products, LyphoMed Senior VP Richard Weiland told attendees of Alex. Brown & Sons' twelfth annual health care conference in Baltimore May 6. "We currently have over 350 products and at the rate [we are] developing new products through our R&D division [LyphoMed's product line] could exceed 1,000 within the next three to five years," Weiland said. "The goal would be to become the American Hospital Supply Company for drugs." In 1986, LyphoMed was second only to Par and its Quad subsidiary in the number of ANDA approvals received during the year with 21. The hospital generics company is projecting another 30 ANDA approvals in 1987. So far this year, LyphoMed's approvals include bretylium tosylate, haloperidol, sulfamethoxazole/trimethoprim, fluorouacil, and vancomycin. Weiland credited the product growth to LyphoMed's two 1985 acquisitions -- Invenex and Bristoject -- which tripled manufacturing capacity, increased critical mass, and brought new technologies, such as plastic vials, ampules and dry powder filling. A Puerto Rico manufacturing plant, slated to open in early 1988, will add to production capabilities, while reducing the firm's tax rate from around 45% to 35%. In addition, LyphoMed has received a number of first-time approvals in the past 12 months, including vincristine, cephapirine and cefazolin during the second half of 1986, and vancomycin in March. In addition, LyphoMed's Xechem subsidiary is currently working on a generic doxorubicin formulation, Weiland said. LyphoMed's recent agreement with the Canadian generic firm, NovoPharm, will also have a positive impact on the growth of LaphoMed's generic product line ("The Pink Sheet" March 9, T&G-3). Asked to comment on the agreement, Weiland said that Lyphomed's "major interest" in entering the arrangement "was to get a line of oral products that we could sell to the hospitals because there are certain antibiotics that are used in oral form in the hospitals." He said that Lyphomed's "major intent . . . has always been the hospital market." A separate joint venture with NovoPharm, Weiland explained, "will market these products to the regular retail market." Ultimately, LyphoMed's plan is to become a marketer of brand name hospital drugs by leveraging its position in micronutrients and generic drugs. "Eventually," Weiland predicted, "we may split the company into two divisions -- the multi-source product line and the ethical product line." Toward that goal, LyphoMed plans to build a 30-person specialty product detail force by the end of 1987. The company's specialty detail force is now up to ten reps, Weiland indicated, from four reps in October. In addition, LyphoMed markets its small volume parenteral nutritional and generic products through a 72-person sales force that is being expanded to 80-90 reps by the end of this year. LyphoMed launched its first brandname product, Pentam 300 (pentamidine) for pneumocystis carinii, in late 1984. LyphoMed is developing three other products through the orphan drug route, including the anticancer agent erwinia asparaginase, quinacrine for cystic fibrosis, and epidural clonidine for analgesia in post-operative pain control. LyphoMed licensed epidural clonidine from Wake Forest University and will fund Phase III studies. In addition to developing orphan products, LyphoMed is also looking to add brand name products through licensing agreements with foreign companies and R&D firms. Weiland said that LyphoMed is currently in "reasonably serious stages" of product licensing discussions with "three or four" biotech firms. LyphoMed has an ongoing agreement with Medco Research covering the cardiovascular agent, Adenocard (adenosine).
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