SANOFI-AVENTIS LAUNCHES PLAVIX IN JAPAN

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Swiss drugmaker sanofi-aventis has announced that it has launched Plavix (clopidogrel) in Japan. The drug has been approved in Japan for the reduction of recurrence in patients after ischemic cerebrovascular disorder (excluding cardiogenic cerebro-embolism).

Sanofi-aventis and Daiichi Pharmaceuticals will collaborate in the areas of manufacturing and co-promotion for Plavix in the country. Clinical trials are currently underway in Japan, with the goal of extending the use of Plavix for heart disease.

The drug, ranked second in sales among those produced by sanofi-aventis, generated first-quarter sales of $730 million, up 21 percent from last year's sales, said the company.