Monday’s deal is a small pharma/big pharma collaboration: Auxilium began operations in 1999 and has only two drugs on the market, whereas Glaxo is a worldwide operation with headquarters in London, an office in Center City, and facilities in the Philadelphia suburbs.
Adrian Adams, chief executive officer and president of Auxilium, said in an interview that his sales force of 150 representatives had done “an incredible job” in generating $205 million in U.S. sales in 2011 and almost $58 million in the first quarter of 2012 (the numbers come from filings with the Securities Exchange Commission).
IMS Health now ranks Auxilium second in sales for such products. Adams hopes Glaxo’s larger force will increase sales in a competitive environment and help Auxilium become profitable.
Endo Pharmaceuticals, of Chadds Ford, and Israel-based Teva Pharmaceuticals, which has facilities in this area, are or will soon be players in the market, as well. Abbott Laboratories is the leader with its AndroGel line, with $874 million in revenue in 2011 and $232 million in first quarter 2012, according to SEC filings.
Testim is applied to the arms and shoulders for treatment of hypogonadism, or lower-than-normal testosterone. The Mayo Clinic says symptoms can include erectile dysfunction, decrease in muscle mass, and loss of bone mass (osteoporosis). Increasing energy is often cited as a goal of the treatment.
“Testosterone is testosterone is testosterone, and the main difference in any of the compounds is how you apply it,” said Penn Medicine urologist Andrew Axilrod, noting that injections and pellets are among the options. “Guys are looking for help in sexual function. That motivates more men, not so much the bone health.”
Men with prostate cancer cannot use the product. Children and women of childbearing age should not touch the gel.
Auxilium and Glaxo agreed on a baseline expectation of sales, and Glaxo will get a portion of net sales that exceed the baseline, Adams said.
In a statement, Cheryl MacDiarmid, vice president of Glaxo’s cardiovascular/metabolic/urology business unit, said, “We look forward to our collaboration with Auxilium and adding Testim to our portfolio so we can help meet the needs of men with this condition.”
Contact David Sell at 215-854-4506 or email@example.com or Twitter @PhillyPharma. Read his PhillyPharma blog on philly.com.