Second Chinese drugmaker seeks approval for Ozempic generic
Second Chinese drugmaker seeks approval for Ozempic generic
Second Chinese drugmaker seeks approval for Ozempic generic
by DZRH News14 June 2024
FILE PHOTO: A box of Ozempic made by Novo Nordisk is seen at a pharmacy in London, Britain March 8, 2024. REUTERS/Hollie Adams/File Photo

By Andrew Silver

SHANGHAI (Reuters) - A second Chinese drugmaker has applied for approval to sell a generic version of Novo Nordisk's blockbuster diabetes drug Ozempic in China.

Livzon Pharmaceutical Group said this week its subsidiary was seeking approval to sell the drug to control blood sugar in patients with type 2 diabetes and reduce risk of major adverse cardiovascular events in those who also have cardiovascular disease.

Novo's Ozempic sales in China more than doubled last year to 4.8 billion Danish crowns ($694 million), accounting for 5% of its total global Ozempic sales, and the company expects approval for its related weight-loss drug Wegovy later this year.


Novo's patent in China for semaglutide, the active ingredient used in both Ozempic and Wegovy, is set to expire in 2026.

The drugmaker is in the midst of a legal fight in the country over the patent and an adverse court ruling could make it lose its semaglutide exclusivity even sooner.

Livzon is one of several local firms developing their own versions of semaglutide-based drugs and is the second to apply for sale after Hangzhou Jiuyuan Gene Engineering earlier this year.

Livzon's filing to the Shenzhen stock exchange did not disclose efficacy data and the company did not respond to a Reuters request for the information. The group has completed a phase three clinical trial, according to a trial database.


Livzon said that its research and development on semaglutide injection to date had cost 141.4 million yuan ($19.5 million).

($1 = 7.2540 Chinese yuan renminbi)

(Reporting by Andrew Silver; Editing by Miyoung Kim and Mrigank Dhaniwala)

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