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Business

OSI leaves eye disease business

November 13, 2006 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 84, ISSUE 46

OSI Pharmaceuticals is exiting the eye disease business, less than a year after acquiring Eyetech Pharmaceuticals for roughly $650 million. The company will try to outlicense, partner, or sell the business, which includes the Eyetech drug Macugen, a treatment for wet age-related macular degeneration (wet AMD). OSI says it has become clear that the eye business will not generate the cash flow it had expected. Macugen's market share has rapidly eroded since the June launch of Genentech's wet AMD drug Lucentis. U.S. sales of Macugen were just $9 million in the third quarter, compared with $59 million a year ago, while Lucentis raked in $153 million in the period.

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