Pfizer awards manufacturing contract for heartburn treatment to Catalent

Catalent will formulate and manufacture Nexium into enteric coated, delayed release pellets using fluid-bed technology

Catalent Pharma Solutions has entered into an exclusive long-term supply agreement to produce Pfizer’s leading over-the-counter (OTC) heartburn treatment, Nexium 24HR (esomeprazole), also marketed as Nexium Control outside the US.

Under the agreement, Catalent’s Winchester, Kentucky, US facility will formulate and manufacture the 20mg Proton Pump Inhibitor drug into enteric coated, delayed release pellets using fluid bed technology. The firm will also encapsulate these pellets into two-piece, hard-shell capsules, where the company has invested in the capsule banding technology required for OTC products.

Pfizer secured the exclusive global rights to market Nexium for the approved OTC indications from AstraZeneca in 2012. Nexium 24HR is now the leading OTC heartburn brand in the US. AstraZeneca continues to manufacture and sell the prescription product.

'Nexium is one of the leading global OTC medicines and its manufacture is well suited to our recently expanded Winchester facility, where we have both the capacity and flexibility to accommodate programmes of this scale,' said Barry Littlejohns, Catalent’s President of Advanced Delivery Technologies.

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