The L.A. Times notes that Prevnar was the world's top-selling vaccine in 2008 with sales of $2.7 billion and was considered a key product in Pfizer's decision to purchase its rival Wyeth. And Matthew Herper of Forbes' health blog predicts that the vaccine could be Pfizer's top seller after Lipitor loses patent protection.
Pfizer expects to start selling Prevnar 13 in the U.S. during the first quarter. Already approved for infants and young children in 38 other countries, Prevnar 13 is also being studied in global Phase III clinical trials in adults, with regulatory submissions expected later in the year, according to a Pfizer statement. Earlier this year, the company said that Prevnar 13 sales in adults older than 50 could account for $1.5 billion in sales.
Pfizer's stock jumped 1.5 percent to $17.94 yesterday following the approval, according the Financial Times.