AstraZeneca looks to expand Brilinta use via India marketing deal with Sun Pharmaceutical

AstraZeneca entered into a distribution services agreement under which Sun Pharmaceutical will market Brilinta (ticagrelor) in India under the brand Axcer, the companies announced Tuesday. Brilinta, which is used for the treatment of acute coronary syndrome (ACS), has been sold in the country by AstraZeneca since 2012.

The drug, which works by inhibiting platelet activation, is specifically indicated to reduce the rate of thrombotic cardiovascular events in patients with ACS. AstraZeneca noted that the deal with Sun Pharma will "expand usage of this molecule through wider reach to physicians."

Sun Pharma said the agreement strengthens its cardiology portfolio, while Abhay Gandhi, CEO of the company's India business, added that "such collaborations are also a part of our stated policy of becoming the partner of choice for promotion and distribution of innovative pharmaceutical products in the country." In 2011, Sun Pharma obtained rights to market Merck & Co.'s diabetes therapies Januvia (sitagliptin) and Janumet (sitagliptin/metformin) in India under different brand names.

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