Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News
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Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News
Pharmaguy curates and provides insights into selected drug industry news and issues.
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Xiidra DTC Ad Campaign Relies on Hokey Double ii’s – Get It?

Xiidra DTC Ad Campaign Relies on Hokey Double ii’s – Get It? | Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News | Scoop.it

The first work for the dry eye disease treatment uses the "ii" in the drug’s name to create visual plays on words. The campaign subs the double i for single i in print, digital and social media ads--asking, "how's iit going?"--as well as in marketing materials for eyecare professionals.

 

The trend continues throughout the work; the professionals' intro kit, for example, reads, "Niice to meet you." There's a drug helpline called "ask iiris," as well as a copay card named the "Xiidra iinsider." And the campaign--created by Shire's agency of record, Digitas Health--also includes a video game app called Bliip, a Pong-like game available in the iTunes store.

 

“From the get-go we wanted to create a consumer brand that cut across both audiences, not just a brand for eyecare professionals and then another brand for consumers. We wanted to create a consumer brand with one voice that connects with those customers,” Victoria Noble, head of marketing for opthamalics at Shire, told FiercePharmaMarketing in an interview.

 

Collette Douaihy, senior vice president and group creative director at Digitas Health, said the opportunity to play off the double i in the name Xiidra makes for a fun, personal and memorable introduction to the brand.

 

“It’s the theme that keeps giving,” she said. “There are so many opportunities to message out and play with the double i’s and get to a very personal level with our target audiences.”

 

“We’re the challenger in this space, so in order for us to make those connections, we needed to break through and be different and engage. We weren’t going to do that by being typical pharma,” Noble said.

Pharma Guy's insight:

But don’t forget - Jennifer Aniston is Shilling for Shire! http://sco.lt/5G686T So will the ii’s or will Jennifer tip the scales in favor of Xiidra? I must admit that Aniston is better looking than that real “spooky” eye doctor used in Allergan’s ads, even though “Allergan's Persistent, Repetitive, Spooky & Annoying DTC Advertising Pays Off!”; http://sco.lt/5UsAGf

 

Also read “Are We at the Saturation Point Viz-a-Viz Celebrity Pharma Endorsements?”; http://sco.lt/5xPB5t

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Jennifer Aniston is Shilling for Shire!

Jennifer Aniston is Shilling for Shire! | Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News | Scoop.it

Shire is expected to unveil a new disease awareness campaign Thursday featuring actress Jennifer Aniston as it prepares to introduce its new dry-eye drug to the U.S. market.

 

The drugmaker expects the multi-channel initiative to lay its foundation in the ophthalmology market, following the approval in July of its chronic dry eye drug, Xiidra. The campaign will also set the stage for Shire to compete with the current market leader, Allergan's Restasis. Xiidra is expected to be available in pharmacies later this month.

 

This is the rare-disease maker's first move into the eye care market and its CEO Flemming Ørnskov told investors during the company's earnings call earlier this month that he considers the launch of Xiidra to be the company's biggest to date. Xiidra represents a new venture from a drugmaker that bills itself as a global biotech focused on rare diseases — given the many millions of people affected by dry-eye disease.

 

“Shire is making a big entry into the eye care space at a time when there's a little bit of churn within the leadership [of the category],” said Vic Noble, head of marketing, ophthalmics, for Shire. “This is what market leaders, and want-to-be market leaders, do — they show a big commitment to health.”

 

The company is indeed making a big commitment, pulling in TV and movie star Jennifer Aniston as the face of the campaign. She will be featured in TV spots for eyelove and will also be involved in consumer PR outreach. Shire hired Digitas Health LifeBrands as the creative agency for campaign, and Edelman is leading social media, experiential events, and consumer PR.

 

“We picked up a magazine and there was a story about Jennifer [Aniston] and she mentioned that she's addicted to eye drops,” Noble said. A few phone calls later and she was on board, Noble noted, adding that “this is an issue she's been dealing with for a while.”

 

Allergan has been preparing for the competition. Its chief commercial officer, Bill Meury, said during an earnings call in August that they expect growth for Restasis to “moderate” with the introduction of Xiidra, as well as the fact that “Shire is going to, of course, be sampling the product heavily.”

Pharma Guy's insight:

Why do drug marketers always claim that they read about celebrities with exactly the health problem their drug treats BEFORE they hire them to shill for the product? Also, you might think disease awareness ads will help the market leader (Restasis) more than Shire's product, but the secret is "heavy" sampling - Free stuff!

NOTE: “Allergan See's Shire's Aniston and Raises Tomei to Promote Restasis”; http://sco.lt/8r5bxB

 

Shire enlisting Jennifer Aniston is a big get, according to Bob Ehrlich, Chairman of DTC Perspectives. "Getting a movie star to promote the dry eye condition must have cost Shire a lot in talent fees. Obviously they think she is worth it. Her ad just went on air under the "myeyelove" title."

"Jennifer Aniston is getting lots of commercial endorsements these days," Said Ehrlich. "She is touting skin care brand Aveeno and plugging the comforts of Emirate Airways. I am sure Shire considered whether we at a Jennifer saturation point. My feeling is we can take a couple more campaigns before she gets overused."

 

My feeling is that I'm at the saturation popint viz-a-viz celebrity pharma endorsements. And the fact that Aniston is plugging other products only goes to prove my point that her people probably approached Shire rather than Shire just stumbling upon a story about her dry eyes in a magazine - in fact I bet that story was an "audition" for the part!

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Is It Alzheimer's Disease or ADHD? Whatever! A New Market for Vyvanse.

Is It Alzheimer's Disease or ADHD? Whatever! A New Market for Vyvanse. | Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News | Scoop.it
Once seen as a disorder affecting mainly children and young adults, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is increasingly understood to last throughout one’s lifetime.

In 2012, in one of the only epidemiological studies done on A.D.H.D. in older adults, a large Dutch population study found the condition in close to 3 percent of people over 60.

Yet we know little about how A.D.H.D. affects older people, or even who has it.

“We hardly have any literature,” said Dr. Thomas Brown, associate director of the Yale Clinic for Attention and Related Disorders at the Yale School of Medicine. Almost none of the clinical trials and epidemiological studies on A.D.H.D. have included people over 50. “But I see quite a few people turning up in my office with these complaints. It’s reasonable to assume that a lot of elderly people have A.D.H.D.”

Heightened awareness of A.D.H.D. is bringing increased referrals of elderly adults to specialty clinics. “A child had been treated, then a parent, then everyone started looking at Grandpa, and saying, ‘Oh my gosh,’ and they would bring him in,” said Dr. Martin Wetzel, associate clinical professor of psychiatry at the University of Nebraska Medical Center.

Yet many general practitioners and mental health experts mistake symptoms like impaired short-term memory or an inability to stay focused on a task as something else.

“We do a horrible job of training health care professionals about adult A.D.H.D.,” Dr. Wetzel said.
Pharma Guy's insight:

This article could have been written by Shire, which has been trying to make a case for treating ADHD in adults for a long time. Read, for example, Shane Victorino: Adult ADHD Poster Boy;  http://bit.ly/pgdaily121513-1C I'm sure many docs read read the Well blog (the origin of this piece) and be convinced to prescribe Vyvanse off-label to treat elderly patients who they originally thought had early signs of Alzheimer's Disease.  

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Shire TV Commercial, 'Binge Eating Disorder' Featuring Monica Seles

Shire TV Commercial, 'Binge Eating Disorder' Featuring Monica Seles | Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News | Scoop.it

Tennis champion Monica Seles shares her personal experience with B.E.D. and urges people to learn more about Binge Eating Disorder.


Recently Aired: 5 days ago on NBC 
during Today ...more

Advertiser: Shire

Actors: Monica Seles


"Once the binge was over, I felt so upset with myself," she recounts. "When I did feel comfortable enough to reach out to a doctor and talk about my condition, it was really like a huge relief."


View the commercial here.

Pharma Guy's insight:


From Fierce PharmaMarketing (here):


Shire will need patients to follow Seles' lead if it wants the new indication to score an additional $200 million to $300 million in Vyvanse sales within a few years, as CEO Flemming Ornskov has predicted. The patient pool is certainly there, with an estimated 2.8 million people suffering from BED in the U.S.


At least one analyst thinks the Dublin drugmaker can capitalize. In a recent investor note seen by Medical Marketing & Media, Jefferies analyst David Steinberg wrote that "while this market will largely need to be 'built' from the [ground] up, Shire has a strong track record in this regard."


After all, Shire played a key role in establishing the ADHD category, Steinberg points out. If it can repeat that success with Vyvanse in B.E.D., the indication could hit $24 million in 2015 sales and $73 million in 2016, he figures.


The Seles spot isn't Shire's only effort to educate the public on the malady, either. The campaign already boasts a website—mybingeeatingdisorder.com—featuring information about the B.E.D., symptoms for ID'ing it, and tips for discussing it with healthcare providers. Steinberg expects Shire's strategy to include "substantial early efforts focused on disease awareness, unmet patient and physician detailing," MM&M reports.


Virtaully anyone can get a script for Vyvanse to treat "B.E.D." read Pharma Marketing Blog (here):


Since there is no lab test to confirm a B.E.D. diagnosis, all I have to do to get a prescription for Vyvanse is convince a doctor that I meet all of the DSM-5® diagnostic criteria for binge eating disorder, which Shire provides here on the BingeEatingDisorder.com website.


Of course, I have to "certify that [I am] a US health care professional and [I am] opting to receive information about binge eating disorder plus site updates, educational information, patient support resources, and other information from Shire," which anyone can do -- even me, who is definitely NOT a health care professional. No problem, that was easy.

But just in case you are reluctant to pose as a doctor and opt in for email from Shire, you can avoid the DSM and use Shire's handy "Binge Eating Disorder (B.E.D.) Symptom Checklist," which you can find on the "Talking With Your Doctor" page where "Starting the Conversation Is Key." 

It's easy to use the Checklist and get a printout (pdf file) to bring to your doctor. Here's how I filled in the Checklist and the advice I got from Shire on "starting the conversation" with my doctor - a surefire way of getting a prescription for Vyvanse and the boost I need during my busy day.



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How to Use Shire's Binge Eating Disorder Symptom Checklist to Score a Controlled Substance Rx

How to Use Shire's Binge Eating Disorder Symptom Checklist to Score a Controlled Substance Rx | Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News | Scoop.it

After writing yesterday's blog post about Monica Seles helping Shire promote Vyvanse for Binge Eating Disorder (B.E.D.), which is a new indication for the ADHD drug, I wondered if this would make it easier for young people to obtain prescriptions for Vyvanse, which is a Schedule II controlled substance with a high potential for abuse.

Like overweight college students, I too could use a little "pick me up" pill from time to time.

Since there is no lab test to confirm a B.E.D. diagnosis, all I have to do to get a prescription for Vyvanse is convince a doctor that I meet all of the DSM-5® diagnostic criteria for binge eating disorder, which Shire provides here on the BingeEatingDisorder.com website.


Anyone can use Shire's handy "Binge Eating Disorder (B.E.D.) Symptom Checklist," which you can find on the "Talking With Your Doctor" page where "Starting the Conversation Is Key." 

It's easy to use the Checklist and get a printout (pdf file) to bring to your doctor. Here's how I filled in the Checklist and the advice I got from Shire on "starting the conversation" with my doctor - a surefire way of getting a prescription for Vyvanse and the boost I need during my busy day.


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Pharma Guy's insight:


This is not the first time Shire has used a symptom checklist to get people to visit their doctor and get their drug. Key to Shire's "Keep Momming" campaign is to get site visitors to take the "Symptom Checklist" (here) and bring the results to their doctor. "If you’re concerned your daughter might have ADHD [and who wouldn't be after watching the videos?], complete the ADHD Symptom Checklist based on her symptoms for the past 6 months, and share the results with her doctor."

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The Devil in the Details of Payments to Physicians by ADHD #Pharma Companies

The Devil in the Details of Payments to Physicians by ADHD #Pharma Companies | Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News | Scoop.it

In total, the 10 pharmaceutical companies I considered (see Table 1), who manufacture and/or market the most popular brand names in the ADHD drug market, as well as their generic counterparts, were reported to have paid approximately $34.6 million in 2013 to prescribing physicians. This number seemed rather small to me given that some of these companies report profits in the billions annually. But also, given that the ADHD drugs they produce are rumored to be the golden goose for many of their bottom lines, I expected I would find that the majority of these 10 companies’ payments reflected efforts to incentivize the popular ADHD drugs prescribed. But this was not the case.


The detailed Open Payments dataset allows one to actually break down the payments not only by how much each pharmaceutical company paid to each provider, but also by what drugs they discussed during the complimentary lunch, or junket to Spain. When I did an analysis exploring the payments received for discussions specifically on ADHD drugs, the total paid by the 10 pharmaceutical companies specifically for the ADHD drugs they sell was only $634,106.91. Yes, according to the Open Payments report we are expected to believe that these 10 ADHD drug companies spent less than 2% of the mere $34.6 million they contributed to dowry gifts pertaining to ADHD drug promotion.

Pharma Guy's insight:


The author of this piece (Michael Corrigan, Ed.D.) says he "came to the conclusion that we shouldn’t assume the 'Open' Payments report is actually forthcoming when it comes to how much money and courtship was put toward incentivizing doctors to prescribe ADHD drugs for kids."


Dr. Corrigan is a psychologist, author, statistician, and professor whose mission is to "discredit the mythic propaganda and doodoo behind the ADHD diagnosis and the dangerous drugs so often prescribed."

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Are Patient Stories Becoming Anecdotal "Evidence" in Pharma Marketing Campaigns?

Are Patient Stories Becoming Anecdotal "Evidence" in Pharma Marketing Campaigns? | Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News | Scoop.it

Social media and real patient stories are a "match made in heaven." Combine that with a celebrity spokesperson who is also a patient or a caretaker of a patient and you got gold! 

That's how I see campaigns such as Shire's "Keep Momming," which was featured in the September 2014 issue of MM&M. According to the article (find it here), "The unbranded 'Keep Momming' campaign has more of a straightforward educational thrust: It seeks to help mothers better identify the symptoms of ADHD in young girls and to make them more cognizant of the inattentiveness aspects of ADHD (as opposed to the easier-to-spot hyperactivity ones)."

Shire, you may recall, markets Vyvanse, a drug indicated for the treatment of ADHD in children and in adults.

This campaign includes a celebrity spokesperson: actress, singer, and NFL wife, Holly Elizabeth Robinson Peete who says her daughter has ADHD. Her story is featured in a video on Shire's KeepMomming.com Website, the title of which is "Real Stories from Real Moms & Daughters."

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Keith McGuinness's curator insight, September 19, 2014 2:52 PM

This article is not about mbHealth per se.  But it describes how mbHealth apps are being sold to us.  Most of what glitters is not gold.  But then again, who really knows; all of the evidence is anecdotal.

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Are We at the Saturation Point Viz-a-Viz Celebrity Pharma Endorsements?

Are We at the Saturation Point Viz-a-Viz Celebrity Pharma Endorsements? | Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News | Scoop.it

I read with interest today's email missive from Bob Ehrlich, Chairman of DTC Perspectives. He was talking about the "Dry Eye DTC Battle" between Allergan's Restasis and the new kid on the bloc: Shire's Xiidra (two i's - get it? aka two "eyes").

 

Ehrlich pointed out that Shire enlisting Jennifer Aniston is a "big get. Getting a movie star to promote the dry eye condition must have cost Shire a lot in talent fees," said Ehrlich.

 

"Obviously they think she is worth it. Her ad just went on air under the 'myeyelove' title" (read "Jennifer Aniston is Shilling for Shire!").

 

Ehrlich noted that Aniston is getting "lots of commercial endorsements these days. She is touting skin care brand Aveeno and plugging the comforts of Emirate Airways. I am sure Shire considered whether we at a Jennifer saturation point. My feeling is we can take a couple more campaigns before she gets overused."

 

My view is that celebs are being overused by pharma marketers these days. Why? Find out here...

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Shire to Defend Its Binge Eating Disorder Screener at 2016 APA Annual Meeting

Shire to Defend Its Binge Eating Disorder Screener at 2016 APA Annual Meeting | Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News | Scoop.it

Shire will present new research on Binge Eating Disorder (B.E.D.) and Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) at the upcoming 169th Annual Meeting of the American Psychiatric Association (APA) in Atlanta, GA, demonstrating its ongoing commitment to furthering the understanding and management of psychiatric disorders.

 

“The data being presented this year at APA will address several important topics within the adult psychiatry therapeutic area, including the characterization of eating behaviors in adults with binge eating disorder, as well as patterns of prescription medication use in two psychiatric disorders,” said Barry K. Herman, MD, MMM, DLFAPA, Global Medical Team Lead, Senior Medical Director for Shire. “These presentations underscore our long-standing commitment to furthering knowledge of psychiatric conditions and advancing research into the unmet needs of people with B.E.D. and ADHD.”

 

Posters presented during the conference will include:

 

Poster Number P6-048; Monday, May 16, 2:00pm EDT: The Use and Value of the 7-Item Binge Eating Disorder Screener in Clinical Practice; Presented by Barry K. Herman, MD, MMM, DLFAPA

 

“Continued research on binge eating disorder in adults is crucial to expanding our understanding of the disorder,” said Cynthia Bulik, PhD, FAED, Distinguished Professor of Eating Disorders, Department of Psychiatry, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and co-author of P6-136. “We value our collaboration with Shire to enhance efforts to educate health care professionals who evaluate adults living with B.E.D.”

Pharma Guy's insight:

Shire makes it easy for anyone to convince their docs to prescribe Vyvanse for their B.E.D. (Binge Eating Disorder), which I described in Pharma Marketing Blog: "How Virtually Anyone Can Get an Rx for Amphetamine... Sorry, I Meant to Say Vyvanse"

 

Shire's B.E.D. symptom checklist, IMHO, is a perfect aid for people who wish to abuse a dangerous Schedule II controlled stimulant.

 

According to my more or less truthful answers to the screener, I may suffer from B.E.D. and be able to convince my doc to prescribe me Vyvanse. 

 

I suggested (http://bit.ly/BEDchecklist) that Shire remove this tool from its website to prevent possible abuse of this medication, but now I see Shire wants to "prove" to the medical community that this bogus test has value in clinical practice!

 

"The strategy for a new drug to treat binge-eating disorder reveals how a pharmaceutical company can influence the treatment of a medical condition," said Dr. Lawrence H. Diller, a behavioral pediatrician in Walnut Creek, Calif. Read: "Shire Makes It Easy for the Public to Learn About the ‘Glories of Amphetamine’"; http://sco.lt/7xiqtl 

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Shire Makes It Easy for the Public to Learn About the "Glories of Amphetamine"

Shire Makes It Easy for the Public to Learn About the "Glories of Amphetamine" | Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News | Scoop.it
The strategy for a new drug to treat binge-eating disorder reveals how a pharmaceutical company can influence the treatment of a medical condition.


With the approval of Vyvanse for binge eating, “now we have another reason for the public to learn about the glories of amphetamine — it’s very worrisome,” said Dr. Lawrence H. Diller, a behavioral pediatrician in Walnut Creek, Calif., who has written about A.D.H.D. drugs. “My hat’s off to Shire. They’ve done it again.”


[The image shows a 1954 advertisement for an methamphetamine-based appetite control drug called Opidice. Shire's new drug Vyvanse also uses a type of amphetamine.]


Dr. Diller and others said Shire appeared to be following a familiar drug industry playbook by promoting awareness of a disorder, in this case binge eating, before more directly marketing its treatment. A company website, BingeEatingDisorder.com, makes no mention of Vyvanse but provides detailed information about how to talk about the disorder with a doctor, including a printable symptom checklist and sample opening lines to start the conversation. The site also tells patients “don’t give up” if a doctor initially resists.


Pharma Guy's insight:


Shire also makes it easy for anyone to convince their docs to prescribe Vyvanse for their B.E.D. (Binge Eating Disorder), which I described in Pharma Marketing Blog 3 weeks ago: "How Virtually Anyone Can Get an Rx for Amphetamine... Sorry, I Meant to Say Vyvanse"


BTW, this story illustrates how major news sources like the NYT and WSJ follow the lead of bloggers like me rather than vice versa. I wrote about this on Feb 5. The NYT writes about it on Feb 24 and the WSJ (Pharmalot) writes about what the NYT wrote on Feb 25. Argggh!

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Shire Needs to "Educate" Consumers & Physicians About BED, Analyst Says

Shire Needs to "Educate" Consumers & Physicians About BED, Analyst Says | Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News | Scoop.it

Shire's ADHD treatment Vyvanse won a label expansion into treating moderatetosevere bingeeating disorder BED Friday. One analyst says that disease awareness and detailing efforts are crucial to the drugs commercial plans in the category.


Jefferies analyst David Steinberg wrote in an investor note Monday morning that he estimates the US patient population for BED at 2.8 million and that unmet need in the category is substantial. He added that the drug's success largely hinges on Shire's ability to spread awareness of the disorder and its patient and physician education efforts.


Steinberg expects the Dublin-based drugmaker's commercial strategy to focus on “physician and patient education with substantial early efforts focused on disease awareness, unmet patient and physician detailing.” He noted that the second step in Shire's marketing plan is likely a DTC campaign.


Steinberg also expressed some confidence that Shire will be able to make this expansion a commercially successful one. “While this market will largely need to be ‘built' from the group up, Shire has a strong track record in this regard—as evidenced by its key role in establishing the ADHD (Adderall and Vyvanse franchises) category,” he explained, estimating sales of $24 million in 2015 and $73 million in 2016.

Pharma Guy's insight:


I think it's less a matter of "education" and more of a matter of "convincing" docs to prescribe Vyvanse to any tom, dick, or harriette patient who walks in the door with Shire's "Symptom Checklist." For more on that read: How Virtually Anyone Can Get an Rx for Amphetamine... Sorry, I Meant to Say Vyvanse

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Shire & Seles Team up in B.E.D. to Promote Vyvanse. Celebrity Endorsement at Its Worst!

Shire & Seles Team up in B.E.D. to Promote Vyvanse. Celebrity Endorsement at Its Worst! | Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News | Scoop.it

OMG! Is there nothing old athletes won't do for money?

Remember Monica Seles who was famously stabbed on the tennis court in 1993? No? OK, whatever. She's celebrity enough to hawk for Shire, which recently won PRIORITY approval from the FDA for a new indication for Vyvanse, it's ADHD drug:

Binge Eating Disorder or B.E.D.

According to Seles & Shire, which is hosting the website BingeEatingDisorder.com ("A Resource for Understanding B.E.D. in Adults"):

"Binge Eating Disorder (B.E.D.) is not just overeating. It is a real medical condition [my emphasis] that was formally recognized in 2013. B.E.D. is the most common eating disorder among US adults."

How many times have you heard the phrase "It is a real medical condition" before? Aside from Seles & Shire, who says B.E.D. is a real medical condition? Who "formally recognized" it in 2013 (just in time for Shire to ask for FDA approval)?


To find out, read more here.

Pharma Guy's insight:


This reminds me of another sports celebrity endorser: Is Phil Mickelson Shilling for Enbrel?

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Shire to pay $56.5 million to settle improper marketing probe

Shire to pay $56.5 million to settle improper marketing probe | Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News | Scoop.it

Shire Plc, which is in the process of being acquired by AbbVie Inc, has agreed to pay $56.5 million (34.5 million pounds) to resolve allegations of making false claims in themarketing of its ADHD drug Adderall XR and other medicines, the U.S. Justice Department said on Wednesday.


The settlement involved charges that Ireland-based Shire, between January 2004 and December 2007, promoted its extended release Adderall with claims of superiority over rival medicines that were not supported by clinical data, the Justice Department said.


The company was also accused of promoting the drug for unapproved uses and of making other false claims not supported by data, such as that Adderall XR would prevent poor academic performance, loss of employment, criminal behaviour, traffic accidents, and sexually transmitted disease.

Pharma Guy's insight:


Meanwhile, you might like to read how Shire marketing is "reeling" in parents and children to consider ADHD treatment: 

Are Patient Stories Becoming Anecdotal "Evidence" in Pharma Marketing Campaigns?
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