Copaxone's US market share fell from 40.4% at the end of 2012 to 36% in July-August 2013, according to a study by UBS of the US market. It stated that Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd's (NYSE: TEVA; TASE: TEVA) multiple sclerosis treatment accounted for 36.2% of prescriptions in July and 35.7% of prescriptions in August.
UBS estimates that Copaxone will account for 36.7% of US prescriptions in 2013 as a whole, and fall to 25.4% of prescriptions in 2014.
Copaxone is estimated to account for half of Teva's profits.
The reason for the decline is the launch of new, oral treatments for multiple sclerosis, while Copaxone is delivered by injection. One of the new drugs, Tecfidera, launched by Biogen Idec Inc. (Nasdaq: BIIB) a few months ago, and won a 9.3% share of the US market in July and an estimated 11.8% of the market in August.
In its guidance, Teva forecasts that global Copaxone sales will total $3.7-3.9 billion in 2013, down from $4 billion in 2012. The company has been preparing for a long time for Copaxone's decline by developing an oral treatment, Laquinimod, which is undergoing advanced clinical trials. Teva is also developing a larger dosage version of Copaxone, which is administered three times a week, instead of daily.
UBS predicts that Teva will launch the larger dosage version of Copaxone in 2014, and that it will account for 3.8% of US prescriptions that year. It also predicts that generic versions of Copaxone will win 2.1% of the market in 2014, and rise to 15.1% by 2017.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on September 10, 2013
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