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MERCK’s WEST POINT PHARMA TO ADD GENERIC ALDOMET AND INDOCIN SR

Executive Summary

MERCK's WEST POINT PHARMA TO ADD GENERIC ALDOMET AND INDOCIN SR to its product line, Merck announced April 13. The recently established West Point Pharma generic drug division "over the next four months" will introduce 10 more generic versions of off-patent Merck brands, including the antihypertensive agent Aldomet (methyldopa) and the sustained-release nonsteroidal anti- inflammatory drug Indocin SR (indomethacin). The two product lines each had 1992 worldwide sales in excess of $100 mil., Merck said. HMS Sales and Marketing, which currently sells West Point's generic version of the NSAID Dolobid (diflunisal), will market the 10 other generics. The 10 products will make up a total of 25 different dosages and formulations, all of which will be sold at competitive prices, Merck said. Merck is not discussing the other future West Point Pharma generics, but some possible candidates may be Clinoril (sulindac) and Sinemet (carbidopa). Diflunisal, the first product from West Point Pharma, which was established at the end of 1992 ("The Pink Sheet" Sept. 7, 1992, T&G-1), "exceeded expectations in 1992 [by] accounting for approximately one-half of the dispensed prescriptions for generic diflunisal," Merck said. Dolobid was a $100 mil.-plus drug for Merck. Other currently available generic diflunisal products are marketed by Lemmon and Roxane Labs. Lemmon received ANDA approval for the first generic version of Dolobid in July 1992 ("The Pink Sheet" Aug. 3, 1992, In Brief) and Roxane followed with an ANDA approval for diflunisal in November. Lemmon launched its diflunisal in October after experiencing a delay due to the supplier's inability to meet Lemmon's demand for raw materials. Lemmon said it is "extremely pleased" with the product's sales.
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