November 30th, 2011
Generic Atorvastatin Hits the Market
The first generic version of Lipitor (atorvastatin) became available today as the exclusive patent held by Pfizer finally expired. Lipitor was by far the most successful prescription drug in history.
Watson Pharmaceuticals announced an authorized generic version. One other company, Ranbaxy, has been authorized to market atorvastatin, but has struggled to gain FDA approval of its manufacturing plant. The company has said it will launch its generic version of atorvastatin later this week.
For the next 6 months, Pfizer, Watson, and Ranbaxy are the only companies that will be authorized to sell atorvastatin. After that, however, the floodgates will open, and the price of atorvastatin will drop to pennies per day.
Here are links to a few of the many news reports and features about this major story:
- Nature News: Blockbuster drug bows out
- Wall Street Journal: Generic Lipitor Goes on Sale This Week: A Users’ Guide
- Forbes: Why There Will Never Be Another Drug Like Lipitor
- New York Times: Facing Generic Lipitor Rivals, Pfizer Battles to Protect Its Cash Cow
- WebMD Health News: Lipitor Goes Generic: What It Means for You