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Lilly's (LLY) R&D Update, Targets 20 New Launches by 2023

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Eli Lilly and CompanyLLY provided an update on its pipeline and research and development (R&D) efforts and said that it has the potential to launch 20 new products in a 10 year time-frame starting 2014 and extending through 2023. The company is also looking to launch an average of two new indications or line extensions for approved products every year during this time period.

Lilly's key areas of focus are diabetes, oncology, immunology, neurodegeneration and pain.

Within the immunology segment, Lilly launched Taltz (psoriasis) in the U.S. recently and is currently seeking approval for baricitinib (rheumatoid arthritis). Taltz is being evaluated for additional indications like psoriatic arthritis and axial spondyloarthritis while baricitinib is in phase II studies for atopic dermatitis and systemic lupus erythematosus.

Lilly has strong expertise in the field of oncology and is focused on three key areas of disease modification: tumor cell signaling, tumor microenvironment and immuno-oncology. Key approved products include Cyramza and Portrazza while important pipeline candidates include olaratumab (under regulatory review for advanced soft tissue sarcoma with FDA response expected in the fourth quarter) and abemaciclib (breast cancer as well as other types of cancer). Lilly expects its immuno-oncology portfolio to have five differentiated molecules in clinical testing by year end, and as many as 11 by the end of 2018.

Lilly has a strong position in the diabetes market as well with key products including Humalog, Humulin and Tradjenta. Other products in the diabetes portfolio include Trulicity, Basaglar, Jardiance, Synjardy and Glyxambi. Lilly and partner Boehringer Ingelheim are currently seeking FDA approval for the addition of cardiovascular (CV) risk reduction data from the EMPA-REG OUTCOME study on Jardiance.

The companies also intend to conduct two outcome studies investigating Jardiance for the treatment of people with chronic heart failure.

Lilly's pain pipeline, which is an emerging research area for the company, currently has two late-stage candidates -- galcanezumab (cluster headache and migraine; launch expected in 2018), and tanezumab (osteoarthritis pain, chronic lower back pain and cancer pain). Tanezumab is being developed in partnership with Pfizer, Inc. PFE .

Finally, the most interesting candidate in Lilly's neurodegeneration portfolio is solanezumab which is being evaluated for Alzheimer's disease. With data readout from a phase III study expected in late 2016, investor focus will remain on this candidate. Lilly has another Alzheimer's disease candidate in its pipeline, AZD3293, which is being developed in collaboration with AstraZeneca plc AZN .

Lilly is a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) stock. Some better-ranked stocks in the large cap pharma sector are Pfizer and Sanofi SNY . While Pfizer is a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) stock, Sanofi is a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) stock.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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