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Drugmaker Eli Lilly’s shares soared 17% to an all-time-high August 8th, making it the most valuable healthcare company in the US. The stock price surge occurred after Lilly said Mounjaro sales increased more than 70% since the first quarter to $980 million. Almost all of that came from the U.S., and the company said significant demand was leading to delays in filling orders for some doses. Eli Lilly reported $980 million in Mounjaro sales in the second quarter, trouncing analyst estimates of $740 million on FactSet.
Eli Lilly and Company announced Aug. 8, 2023 its financial results for the second quarter of 2023.
“Lilly’s financial results in Q2 were led by Mounjaro sales and a strong performance from Growth Products,” said David A. Ricks, Lilly’s chair and CEO.
“Exciting scientific breakthroughs, such as TRAILBLAZER-ALZ 2 in Alzheimer’s disease and SURMOUNT-3 and -4 in obesity, encourage us to continue to make significant investments that support our new medicines including multiple launches expected by the end of 2023 to help more patients around the world.”
Lilly had numerous updates recently on key regulatory, clinical, business development and other events, including:
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved Mounjaro at the end of last year’s second quarter to treat type 2 diabetes, but analysts see a lot of potential for it in the booming market for weight-loss treatments, and doctors have already been prescribing it off-label for that.
Regulators are currently deciding whether to also make weight loss an approved use. Lilly said earlier this year that the injectable treatment helped people with type 2 diabetes who were overweight or obese to lose up to 16% of their body weight, or more than 34 pounds, over nearly 17 months.
Type 2 diabetes, the most common form of diabetes, is a chronic and progressive condition in which the body does not make or use insulin normally, leading to high levels of glucose (sugar) in the blood. More than 30 million Americans have type 2 diabetes. Despite the availability of many medications to treat diabetes, many patients do not achieve the recommended blood sugar goals.
In response to relentless pressure from diabetes advocates and impending federal legislation limiting Medicare copayments for insulin, Big Pharma has pledged to slice the list prices of major insulin products. On March 1, Eli Lilly and Co announced a significant reduction in list prices for its commonly prescribed insulin products, Humulin and Humalog. The company plans to lower the prices by 70% from the Q4 of this year, a move that may provide affordable medication to millions of Americans with diabetes.
Last year, Eli Lilly and Company announced plans to invest an additional $450 million and create at least 100 new jobs to expand its manufacturing capacity at the company’s Research Triangle Park facility. The expansion includes additional parenteral filling, device assembly and packaging capacity to support an increased demand for Lilly’s incretin products that treat diabetes.
“As we move into 2023, Lilly is focused on finding innovative solutions to meet the growing demand for our medicines,” said Edgardo Hernandez, executive vice president and president, Lilly Manufacturing Operations. “Expanding our operations at Research Triangle Park will accelerate the rate at which we can produce medicines that patients rely on to address serious health challenges like diabetes. We’re on track to achieve the goal we shared in November 2022 of doubling incretin capacity by the end of this year, but this investment is key to ensuring even more patients will have access to medicines they need in the future.”
Since 2020, Lilly has committed roughly $4 billion to new manufacturing facilities in North Carolina, including $1.7 billion for the development and expansion of its site at Research Triangle Park. The company anticipates initial production at Research Triangle Park to begin this year, with preparations for inspections by the FDA ongoing.
Since 2014, Lilly has introduced 18 new medicines to make life better for people living with diseases like diabetes and cancer and aims to introduce several potential new medicines in 2023. This expansion will play a pivotal role in delivering supply of existing Lilly medications, while preparing to bring the next generation of medicines to patients worldwide.