) recently received some good news with the US Patent &
Trademark Office granting a reissue patent for Pfizer's pain
drug, Celebrex. Celebrex is approved for the relief of the signs
and symptoms of osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and
ankylosing spondylitis, and the management of acute pain in
The reissue patent will provide coverage up to Dec 2, 2015
including 6 months of pediatric exclusivity. The basic patent was
scheduled to expire on May 30, 2014 including 6 months of
Pfizer, which is facing patent challenges from several
companies for Celebrex, immediately put into action plans to
delay the entry of generic competition. The company has filed
patent infringement lawsuits against generic players -
), Lupin and Apotex - in the US District Court for the Eastern
District of Virginia.
All these companies are seeking US Food and Drug
Administration (FDA) approval for their generic versions of the
drug. The companies are looking to launch their generic versions
after May 30, 2014 and before Dec 2, 2015.
We are positive on the granting of the reissue patent which
buys time for Pfizer to generate additional sales from Celebrex
before generics enter the market. With Lipitor losing
exclusivity, Celebrex was among the top contributors to US sales
in 2012. Celebrex sales increased 8% to $2.7 billion in 2012. In
the US alone, Celebrex sales in 2012 were $1.7 billion, up
Pfizer currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). While
near-term earnings will be driven by cost cutting efforts and
share repurchases, longer-term growth will depend on the success
of drug development. The company's pipeline needs to deliver
given the Lipitor loss of exclusivity and the upcoming loss of
exclusivity on additional products in the next few years.
Meanwhile, both Teva and Actavis are Zacks Rank #3 stocks.
However, Mylan is a Zacks Rank #2 stock (Buy).
ACTAVIS INC (ACT): Free Stock Analysis Report
MYLAN INC (MYL): Free Stock Analysis Report
PFIZER INC (PFE): Free Stock Analysis Report
TEVA PHARM ADR (TEVA): Free Stock Analysis
To read this article on Zacks.com click here.