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Home Industry News Novartis strikes deal over interferon beta 1b

Novartis strikes deal over interferon beta 1b

26th March 2007

Novartis has announced that, following a deal with Bayer Schering Pharma, it will launch its own branded version of interferon beta-1b.

Currently available under the brand name Betaseron, the arrangement between the two firms will see manufacturing responsibilities for the drug transferred to Bayer Schering Pharma.

The new Novartis version of interferon beta-1b will be launched onto the market in 2009, according to the company, pending approval of the agreement from regulatory authorities.

Novartis’ once-a-day therapy, FTY720, is currently in phase III trials with an expected launch date of the same year, meaning the number of multiple sclerosis-combating products offered by the firm is growing.

“This agreement gives us an opportunity to strengthen our neuroscience portfolio and build our presence in multiple sclerosis while preparing for the submission of FTY720 as planned for 2009,” said Thomas Ebeling, chief executive of Novartis.

“As a truly new treatment approach with once-daily oral dosing, we believe FTY720 can offer significant therapeutic benefits to MS patients.”

Bayer Schering Pharma will purchase the equipment for manufacturing responsibility from Novartis housed at its Emeryville, California sites for $110 million and will continue to pay royalties to Novartis until October 2008.

Novartis was recently ranked number one in the world among pharmaceutical companies by Forbes in a list of the world’s most admired companies.

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