Sanofi-Aventis will be expanding into generics, says the Wall Street Journal, while cutting its research and development. The generic group will be reshuffled to focus on emerging markets where drug sales are on the rise. The Health Blog adds that Sanofi recently bought two Latin American generic-drug companies as well as a Czech one. The Health Blog also notes that Johnson & Johnson is contemplating selling generics outside the US, Pfizer has a deal with Aurobindo Pharma and Claris Lifesciences to market generics in emerging markets, and that AstraZeneca, Merck, and Novartis are also dipping their toes into generics.
On a related note, Japan has approved its first generic biotech drug, Somatropin. This Novartis drug treats growth hormone deficiency in children or associated with Turner's syndrome or chronic renal insufficiency.