In a week that saw Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) report a 48% drop in profit and Novartis (NYSE:NVS) and Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) temper their full-year sales forecasts, results from Wyeth (NYSE:WYE) provided a beacon of light for big pharma. The drugmaker announced a 12% increase in second-quarter earnings per share and upped its full-year earnings forecast.

Other highlights for Wyeth's Q2 included FDA approval of the company's oral contraceptive Lybrel, as well as approval for Torisel, the company's renal cancer drug. Wyeth now expects to launch seven new products over the next 18 months in an effort to maintain its earnings momentum as well as its place among the pharmaceutical elite.

Wyeth has been one of the better-performing major pharmaceuticals over the past 52 weeks. Its stock now trades at a 27% premium over this time a year ago, and for the quarter ended June 30, nine of Wyeth's top 10 drugs enjoyed year-over-year sales growth.

Of particular promise was the reversal over Q1 for its top seller, the antidepressant Effexor, which experienced a 6% rise in Q2 sales over the year-ago quarter. Wyeth's No. 2 seller, Prevnar, a vaccine for children, and its No. 3 seller, Protonix, a drug for treating acid reflux, also enjoyed explosive growth over last year's Q2 -- 22% for Prevnar and 25% for Protonix. These two drugs have now grown to account for 21% of the company's total net revenue.

Despite the recent mixed results at the other large-cap pharmaceutical companies, I remain fairly bullish on Wyeth. The drugmaker has done a tremendous job bringing new products to market from an innovative research-and-development pipeline, and it has experienced remarkable sales growth for its existing top sellers while keeping its sales, general, and administrative expenses in check. I expect that we'll see yet another scintillating quarter out of Wyeth in Q3.

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Fool contributor Billy Fisher does not own shares of any of the companies mentioned. Johnson & Johnson is an Income Investor selection. Pfizer is an Inside Value recommendation. The Fool has a disclosure policy.

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