UPDATE 1-Bristol-Myers results lag as Plavix sales evaporate

Wed Oct 24, 2012 8:27am EDT
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* Generics nearly wipe out Plavix sales

* Adjusted profit 41 cents/share vs Street view 42 cents

* Sales $3.74 billion vs Street view $3.98 bln

* Shares fall 2.2 pct in premarket trading

Oct 24 (Reuters) - Bristol-Myers Squibb Co's quarterly sales and earnings missed Wall Street expectations as cheaper generics nearly wiped out sales of its blood clot preventer Plavix, sending its shares down 2 percent in premarket trading.

Global sales of Plavix, sold in partnership with French drugmaker Sanofi, plunged 96 percent in the third quarter to $64 million, the company reported on Wednesday. The pill was the world's second-biggest-selling medicine until its U.S. patent lapsed in May.

A slew of generics rushed in when Plavix lost its U.S. marketing exclusivity in May, a departure from the common practice of only one generic being allowed on the market during the first six months after a patent expiration.

But multiple generics were allowed because a generic form of Plavix was briefly sold in the United States by Apotex Inc in 2006, before a federal court ruled the privately held Canadian company had infringed the Plavix patent and forced Apotex to stop selling its version.

Bristol-Myers said it lost $711 million, or 43 cents per share in the third quarter, including a charge of $1.8 billion for an experimental treatment for hepatitis C called BMS-986094, which showed disappointing results in clinical trials.   Continued...