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Friday, January 8, 2010

Teva Pharma Sees Copaxone Pressure Coming But Not from Generic

By Thomas Gryta, Of DOW JONES NEWSWIRES

NEW YORK -(Dow Jones)-. (TEVA) doesn't expect generic competition for its blockbuster multiple sclerosis treatment Copaxone before 2014, but the company warned that competition from oral MS drugs will likely pressure sales before that time.

The Copaxone battle is notable because it pits the world largest generics company, which has benefited from challenging the patents of other pharmaceutical companies, against generic competitors to protect the exclusivity of its own brand.

Momenta Pharmaceuticals Inc. (MNTA) and Mylan Inc. (MYL) have both filed to produce generic versions of Copaxone, a process that is likely to span years. The drug, one of the world's best selling MS treatments with 2008 sales of $2.26 billion, is a key component of Teva's business.


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