Amarin reports 62% rise in fourth quarter sales of Vascepa

Costs, including ongoing R&D, means the company reports loss of $21.9 million for the quarter and $115.2 million for full year

Irish pharma company Amarin has reported a 62 per cent rise in fourth quarter sales of its sole drug, Vascepa.

Irish pharma company Amarin has reported a 62 per cent rise in fourth quarter sales of its sole drug, Vascepa.

 

Irish pharma company Amarin has reported a 62 per cent rise in fourth quarter sales of its sole drug, Vascepa.

The refined omega-3 fish oil drug reduces harmful blood fats in people at risk of heart disease delivered sales of $26.4 million in the three months to the end of December last compared to $16.5 million in the year ago period.

For the year as a whole, sales jumped 51 per cent to $81 million.

However, costs, including ongoing R&D, meant the company reported a loss of $21.9 million for the quarter and $115.2 million for the full year.

The figures, which equate to a loss per share of 10 cent for the quarter and 56 cent for the year were ahead of 2014 and of forecasts.

Vascepa is approved for people with very high levels of blood fats called triglycerides. The company has been battling to win approval for a a much larger population of people with lower, but still high triglyceride levels.

Amarin is engaged in negotiations with the regulator, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) after winning a preliminary ruling in a First Amendment case over its right to share information with doctors about the impact of the drug on this larger patient population on the basis of results from a clinical trial designed with the FDA.

While the company said it was unable to give any details on the progression of those negotiations, it noted that the preliminary ruling meant it was still able to pursue the wider market opportunity.

Regardless of the outcome of the current talks, it would have “no meaningful bearing on ongoing operations”, the company said in a conference call with investors.

The company said it expects full-year sales in 2016 to grow further to somewhere between $105 and $120 million, with margins continuing to expand.