"Copycat" may have been an unflattering taunt in childhood, but when it comes to drug companies, copycats are more than just a minor annoyance. GlaxoSmithKline
A lower court had already ruled against Glaxo's Augmentin patent, leaving the company open to generic competition from Geneva Pharmaceuticals, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries
Generic competition is hardly unusual in the world of big pharma. Companies with blockbuster drugs that face patent expiration generally find a new application or more convenient dosage schedule, sometimes even a new name and marketing angle, in order to preserve revenues and give new life to an endangered drug. For example, Glaxo also has Augmentin ES and XR in its pharmaceutical lineup, which represent 35% of all prescriptions written for Augmentin, both branded and generic.
Back in September, a generic version of Paxil, one of Glaxo's most popular drugs, launched the company into another patent dispute.
Another of Glaxo's high-profile drugs that could face increased competition is Levitra, a drug for erectile dysfunction co-launched with Bayer
On Friday came word of the Food and Drug Administration approval and imminent launch of yet another impotence drug, Cialis, masterminded by Eli Lilly
Much like Merck
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