Lilly launches new Cymbalta TV spots

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Lilly launched new Cymbalta work for depression and diabetic nerve pain in April.

A branded TV spot for depression, by Interpublic’s DraftFCB HealthCare, are running on network and cable programming with an emphasis on daytime and primetime, a Lilly spokeswoman told MM&M.

The ad plays on the theme of sufferers “trying” perform their roles as spouses or parents in the face of depression. Print ads will debut this summer, as well, replacing the existing work.

The marketing makeover follows a new indication for generalized anxiety disorder, secured in February. Lilly has also established a specialty sales force to promote the diabetic nerve pain indication, for which it was approved in 2004. That strategy takes Lilly squarely into territory inhabited by Pfizer’s Lyrica, also approved for diabetic peripheral neuropathy (DPN).

In a recent conference call with analysts, Lilly said Cymbalta is “narrowing the share gap” with Lyrica in the DPN market. Going forward, the company expects to submit supplemental NDAs on Cymbalta for fibromyalgia later this year and has begun studies in chronic pain.

Cymbalta had $386 million in US first-quarter sales, up 88% compared with the first three months of 2006. Citing weekly data from IMS Health, Lilly said Cymbalta, an SNRI, has gained total prescription share, while Effexor, the SNRI from Wyeth, lost share during the first quarter, according to Lilly.
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