News Column

BRIEF: Israel approves double-dosage Copaxone

June 8, 2014

By Shiri Habib-Valdhorn, Globes, Tel Aviv, Israel

June 08--Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (NYSE: TEVA; TASE: TEVA) has obtained approval from Israel'sMinistry of Health for its 40-mg dosage of Copaxone, for the treatment of multiple sclerosis. The 40-mg dosage is administered three times a week, instead of daily for the regular 20-mg dosage.

Teva has been working hard to switch patients to the double dosage. According to US data, the switch has been a success: as of the end of May, 57% of new Copaxone prescriptions were for the 40-mg dosage.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved 40-mg Copaxone in late January. Teva predicted that it would transfer 40% of patients to the new dosage by mid-2014 and 50% by the end of the year.

Citi Research analyst Liav Abraham says that the company is beating the forecast. She says that the upside is because fewer patients are switching from Copaxone to competing oral treatments, and also because of delays in generic Copaxone, giving Teva the chance to switch patients to 40-mg Copaxone. She reiterates her "Buy" recommendation with a target price of $70 -- a 37% premium on Friday's close of $51.08 on the New York Stock Exchange, giving a market cap of $45.5 billion.


(c)2014 the Globes (Tel Aviv, Israel)

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Source: Globes (Tel Aviv)

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