Biogen Idec Inc. (BIIB), Sanofi SA (ADR) (SNY), Elan Corporation, plc (ADR) (ELN): The Greatest Thing Since Sliced Bread Has Arrived for MS Patients

When given the choice of these three drugs, even with Tecfidera’s $50,000-$55,000 annual price tag, according to RBC Capital Markets analyst Michael Yee, I can almost assure you physicians and patients with any complication potential are going to opt for Biogen’s therapy.

Biogen’s MS-sector domination
But, Biogen Idec Inc. (NASDAQ:BIIB) isn’t done there. The growing biotech behemoth recently paid $3.25 billion to acquire a full working interest in IV-based MS therapy Tysabri from Elan Corporation, plc (ADR) (NYSE:ELN). The cash gives Elan Corporation, plc (ADR) (NYSE:ELN) the working capital to start over from a relatively empty portfolio while giving Biogen Idec Inc. (NASDAQ:BIIB) the chance to challenge Novarits, Sanofi SA (ADR) (NYSE:SNY), and Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd (ADR) (NYSE:TEVA) in the MS arena.

Trust me, there’s little love lost in the MS sector with Teva’s $4 billion MS drug, Copaxone, set to come off patent in two years. In fact, Teva had tried, unsuccessfully, to delay the FDA approval of Tecfidera on the grounds that there were signs of renal toxicity in its animal studies. As you can guess by yesterday’s approval, Teva didn’t win that argument and could now stand to lose Copaxone sales long before generics hit the market in 2015.

Now, it’s up to Biogen to successfully price and launch Tecfidera, as well as get this revolutionary capsule approved in the EU where the Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) recommended approval of the drug last week. Assuming Biogen Idec Inc. (NASDAQ:BIIB)doesn’t pull a Dendreon Corporation (NASDAQ:DNDN) and completely blow the launch, and Tecfidera gains approval from the European Medicines Agency in the second-quarter, we could be looking at better than $4 billion in worldwide sales by 2017.

That is one mighty fine slice of bread if I don’t say so myself!

The article The Greatest Thing Since Sliced Bread Has Arrived for MS Patients originally appeared on

Fool contributor Sean Williams has no material interest in any companies mentioned in this article. You can follow him on CAPS under the screen name TMFUltraLong, track every pick he makes under the screen name TrackUltraLong, and check him out on Twitter, where he goes by the handle @TMFUltraLong.The Motley Fool owns shares of Dendreon.

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