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LONDON, Jan 16 (Reuters) -
GlaxoSmithKline Plc <GSK.L> faces a new cut-price competitor
to its antidepressant Paxil following settlement of a legal dispute
with Synthon Pharmaceuticals Ltd which allows Synthon to market a
variation of GSK's drug.
Chapel Hill-based U.S. generic drugmaker said late on Thursday it
planned to launch its product, Pexeva, in the United States in the
first half of 2004.
slightly different from Paxil and other generic rivals because it
contains paroxetine mesylate as the active ingredient. Paxil
contains paroxetine hydrochloride. As a result, industry analysts
believe its market impact may be limited.
Paxil already faces generic competition from
Canada's Apotex Corp, which launched a copycat version of the
medicine -- previously GSK's top-selling product -- in
That triggered a
deal between GSK and Par Pharmaceutical, a division of
Pharmaceutical Resources Inc (nyse: PRX
under which GSK will supply generic Paxil tablets to Par for sale in
the U.S. market, creating competition to the generic from
GSK had filed a suit
alleging Synthon infringed three of its patents. The settlement
disposes of all three patent infringement claims, including a
royalty payable to GSK.
in GSK, Europe's biggest drugmaker, were up 0.3 percent at 12.06
pounds by 0825 GMT, in line with a steady London stock market.
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