Thomson Reuters names five most promising Q1 drugs

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A new Thomson Reuters study has named the most promising drugs launched or receiving approval during the first quarter of 2008.

Tibotec, a Johnson & Johnson (J&J) subsidiary, launched Intelence (etravirine) in January 2008, and stands to pull in sales of $321 million in 2011, according to forecasts in the study. Intelence is an HIV-1 product.

Wyeth's Pristia, a serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SNRI) for depression, was developed to address common side affects of competing SNRIs, such as weight gain, according to the study. The drug was approved in March 2008, and is expected to launch this spring, the study said. 

Ionsys, launched in January 2008 by J&J's ALZA, is an electrotransport system for acute pain relief. The study suggests that Duragesic's patent expiry in 2005 will fuel sales of Ionsys as a potential replacement.

Regeneron launched Arcalyst (rilonacept) in March 2008, to address unmet needs for patients with CIAS1-associated periodic syndromes (CAPS), which include familial cold auto-inflammatory syndrome and Muckle-Wells syndrome.  According to the study, Arcalyst performed handsomely in a double-blind, placebo-controlled CAPS registration study, with patients taking Arcalyst reporting an 85% reduction in symptoms, compared with 13% reduction from placebo.

Lastly, MiddleBrook's Moxatag received approval in January 2008, for the treatment of pharyngitis and tonsillitis. The drug is expected to be launched at the start of the 2008/2009 cold season, according to the study.

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