Humira soars yet again to drive Abbott growth

Abbott Laboratories has posted a decent set of financials for the second quarter, driven again by its anti-inflammatory blockbuster Humira.

Net income fell 11.2% to $1.73 billion, though the decline was due principally to restructuring and charges, while group sales increased 2.0% to $9.81 billion. Proprietary pharmaceutical revenues climbed 4.9% to $4.38 billion.

Humira (adalimumab), which is approved for indications covering rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease and psoriasis, contributed $2.33 billion (+16.5%). As for the company’s lipids franchise, TriCor (fenofibrate) and TriLipix (fenofibric acid) had sales of $388 million, down 6.6%, while Niaspan (niacin) brought in $211 million, a decrease of 14.7%. Revenues from the HIV drug Kaletra (lopinavir/ritonavir) were down 18.3% to $275 million, while sales of the prostate cancer drug Lupron (leuprolide) slipped 2.2% to $200 million.

The hypothyroid medication Synthroid (levothyroxine) was down 10.0% to $155 million, but on the positive side, Abbott’s Androgel testosterone replacement therapy climbed 24.7% to $284 million. Abbott’s nutritional products had sales of $1.58 billion, up 6.3%, while ‘established pharmaceuticals’, which includes sales of branded generics outside the USA, fell 6.0% to $1.25 billion. Turnover of vascular products, which includes heart stents, fell 8.3% to $766 million.

Chief executive Miles White said Abbott continues to deliver strong results, noting that during the second quarter, “we launched and advanced numerous projects in our promising, broad-based pipeline and achieved key milestones in the separation process”. The latter comment refers to a move that will see the company’s $18 billion drugs arm split into a unit called AbbVie, while the diagnostics, devices, nutrition and branded generics businesses will keep the Abbott name.



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