Lupin Optimistic On Albuterol Given COVID-19 Demand
Metformin Batch Likely To Be Recalled
Lupin hopes a surge in demand for albuterol sulphate due to increased off-label use in COVID-19 patients will help its generic version, which is likely to be launched in the first half of FY21. But the Indian firm may recall a batch of metformin after the US FDA recently asked a few companies to retract extended-release versions due to NDMA concerns.
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Lupin CEO Vinita Gupta shares plans to shift manufacture of albuterol and some other products to its US facilities, with a rollout of a generic to Teva’s ProAir expected soon. Enthused by Lupin’s first biosimilar introduction In Europe with etanercept and looking to up the company’s digital game, the executive says Amazon’s entry into India’s e-pharmacy space is not a near-term worry
Despite plans to launch a biosimilar to Enbrel in August and a generic to ProAir in September, Lupin cut its FY21 EBITDA forecast to 17% from 19-20%, as first-quarter revenues were hit by COVID-19 and a recall of metformin in the US. Meanwhile, it sees the US “Buy American” order for some essential medicines as a near-term opportunity
Zydus Cadila hopes to launch its version of Gilead’s remdesivir by end-July in India, even as earlier licensees Hetero Drugs and Cipla have just commercialized the antiviral. Plans for pegylated interferon alfa-2b to treat COVID-19 include a trial in Mexico and an IND in the US. Separately, desidustat is being considered for additional indications.