FDA Okays First Generic of ProAir HFA

Megan Brooks


February 25, 2020

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the first generic version of Teva's ProAir HFA (albuterol sulfate inhalation aerosol).

Generic albuterol sulfate inhalation, from Perrigo Pharmaceutical Co, is indicated for the treatment or prevention of bronchospasm in people aged 4 years or older who have reversible obstructive airway disease, as well as for the prevention of exercise-induced bronchospasm.

"Approval of the first generic drug product for one of the most commonly used rescue inhalers in the US is part of our long-standing commitment to advance patient access to lower-cost, high-quality generic drug products that are as safe and effective as their brand name counterparts, and to expand opportunities to bring generic copies of complex drugs to the market," FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn, MD, said in a news release.

Metered-dose inhalers are hard to duplicate because of the complexities of their formulation or mode of delivery. "As a result, too many complex drugs lack generic competition even after patents and exclusivities no longer block generic approval," he explained.

"Supporting development and approval of generic copies of these complex medicines so that these products can get to patients has been a major focus of our efforts to improve competition and access and to lower drug prices. Getting more generic copies of complex drugs to the market is a key priority for how we'll help bring new savings to consumers," Hahn added.

In the United States, more than 26 million people suffer from asthma; about 7 million of these people are children.

Perrigo said it will immediately launch a limited quantity of generic albuterol sulfate and, in collaboration with its development and manufacturing partner, Catalent Pharma Solutions, is ramping up production to meet future demand.

The company "anticipates that we will be in a position to provide a steady supply of this product by the fourth quarter of 2020," Perrigo Executive Vice President and Rx Pharmaceuticals President Sharon Kochan said in a statement.

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