said it will invest more than US$325 million in new facilities at its five Barceloneta plants, where it produces the osteoporosis treatment Fosamax, hypertension drug Vasotec
and other best-selling prescription drugs, reports The San Juan Star (April 27, 2001):
In addition to this mega-competitor challenge, Merck also faces a cluster of major patent expirations during the next three years, including Vasotec
, Pepcid, Prilosec, Mevacor, and Prinivil.
Its top products are well-known to anyone who has spent time waiting in line at a pharmacy: Propecia, Maxalt, Vioxx, Zocor and Vasotec
, among others.
Drug FFS Mentions Drug HMO Mentions Lanoxin 11,040,029 FUROSEMIDE 765,020 Cardizem 7,279,562 Lanoxin 738,471 Procardia 6,848,458 Vasotec
580,145 Zantac 6,775,104 Cardizem 545,495 FUROSEMIDE 6,190,546 HCTZ(**) 496,224 Lasix 6,000,161 Procardia 479,228 Vasotec
5,992,800 Premarin 413,688 Synthroid 5,697,207 Synthroid 402,307 Capoten 5,500,437 ISOSORBIDE DN 401,875 Premarin 5,131,864 Ventolin 386,878
For example, Merck has challenged Apotex in Canada over Vasotec
, Canada's largest selling medicine and Merck's top product.
ACE (angiotensin-converting enzyme) inhibitors, including Capoten, Vasotec
, Prinivil, and Zestril, cause blood vessels to dilate.
Nerve Blockers Generic Name Trade Name rauwolfia derivatives Reserpine guanethidine Ismelin guanadrel Hylorel alpha methyldopa Aldomlet clonidine Catapres guanabenz Wytensin prazosin Minipress terazosin Hytrin Beta Blockers propranolol Inderal metoprolol Lopressor nadolol Corgard atenolol Tenormin timolol Blocadren pindolol Visken acebutolol Sectral labetolol Normodyne or Trandate Blood Vessel Dilators hydralazine, Apresoline minoxidil Loniten(**) Hormone inhibitors captopril Capoten enalapril Vasotec
lisinopril Prinivel or Zestril Calcium Channel Blockers nifedipine Procardia verapamil Isoptin or Calan diltiazem Cardizem nicardipine Cardene
Much of Merck's rapid growth was due to Vasotec
, a heart drug introduced in 1986 that now commands over US $ 1 billion a year in sales, and an assortment of other medications for heart disease.
Beta blockers, such as Lopressor and Inderal, and ACE inhibitors, such as Lotensin and Vasotec
, are among the most commonly prescribed medications.
s major products include Vasotec
and Prinivil (angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors for high blood pressure and angina), Mevacor and Zocor (cholesterol-lowering agents), Fosamax (osteoporosis), Vioxx (an antiarthritic), Crixivan (HIV/AIDS), Singulair (asthma), and Prilosec (gastro-intestinal disorders).
Two products, Mevacor and Vasotec
, are megadrugs with sales topping $1 billion.
The JNC 8 writers suggested doctors choose from an angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor (ACEI, such as Altace, Vasotec
, Lotensin), angiotensin receptor blocker (ARB, such as Benicar, Diovan), calcium channel blocker (CCB, such as Norvasc, Procardia) or thiazide diuretic (such as Esidrix or Zaroxolyn).
It was followed by Vasotec
, which was five times the price of the U.
The predominant problem was the expiration of patents on several key medicines -- including Mevacor (a cholesterol-lowering medication); Vasotec
, Vaseretic, Prinivil and Prinzide (anti-hypertensives); and Pepcid (for treating heartburn) -- which caused significant competition from generics.