STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:
NPR's business news starts with cheaper cholesterol drugs for many Americans.
(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)
INSKEEP: The drug maker Pfizer has lost the patent on its drug Lipitor. The patent expired in the United States yesterday. And on the same day, regulators granted an Indian company approval to sell a cheaper, generic version of the cholesterol drug in the U.S. market.
Pfizer has sold about $100 billion worth of Lipitor since 1997. Revenues are now expected to plummet. And more generic rivals are expected to hit the market soon, meaning consumers will be paying a fraction of the previous cost for that medication.
NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by Verb8tm, Inc., an NPR contractor, and produced using a proprietary transcription process developed with NPR. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio record.