Chong Kun Dang has entered an osteoporosis therapy market with Prolia (compound: denosumab) by Amgen, drawing attention from industry watchers.
Chong Kun Dang종근당 made a contract with Amgen Wednesday to sell Prolia in Korea. Amgen암젠 will deal with general hospitals while Chong Kun Dang is to sell to semi-general hospitals and clinics.
Prolia is most noteworthy among the osteoporosis therapies. It is RANKL target treatment, and people have only to get the shot once every six months. It is used for women with osteoporosis after menopause and men with osteoporosis. Since its release in November 2016, the drug has not received insurance benefits but will get the coverage from next month.
Korean doctors have been reluctant to prescribe Prolia because it didn’t get medical insurance. But the treatment also has several advantages, including the records of prescription for the past decade by foreign doctors.
People have to take the bisphosphonate drugs, used widely to treat the disease, for five years and stop for a period because of its long half-life and can suffer from jawbone necrosis. If people stop taking Prolia immediately when there are side effects, however, the side effects disappear because of short half-life. Getting the injection once every six months is another advantage regarding patient convenience.
Abundant clinical data and sales ability of Chong Kun Dang will likely create a synergic effect to expand the prescription of Prolia, the company said.
Chong Kun Dang has recently attempted to expand sales by introducing competitive drugs, with good results.
According to UBIST, Chong Kun Dang has recorded 240 billion won ($211 million) in the outpatient prescription market in the first half of this year because of the growth of some drugs such as the DPP-4 inhibitor diabetes therapy Januvia, the hyperlipidemia therapy Atozet, and the cognition improvement therapy Chong Kun Dang Gliatilin.
The prescriptions of self-developed products, including hyperlipidemia therapy Lipilow, the hypertension complex Telminuvo, and the TZD series diabetes therapy Duvie have also increased.
The introduction of Prolia is expected to further sharpen its competitive edge in the internal secretion area, a company official said.
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