Wockhardt UK expanding Byetta manufacturing capacity

Wockhardt Ltd's UK-based subsidiary Wockhardt UK Ltd will commission a new facility to expand its Byetta (Exenatide) cartridges manufacturing capacity. The new facility is due to be commissioned in September 2006.

"Our factory has been operating seven days a week to supply Byetta. We unilaterally and proactively decided to invest in new cartridge capacity," Sirjiwan Singh, managing director, Wockhardt UK, said.

Eli Lilly, the global pharma company marketing Byetta, has been advising physicians to limit the number of patients they start on the new diabetes drug because of a shortage of Byetta. Wockhardt UK is currently the only supplier of Byetta cartridges.

The expansion project, currently under way, will raise the Byetta cartridge manufacturing capacity by four times from the current capacity. Byetta is an injectible drug for the management of Type 2 diabetes. Wockhardt UK has been exceeding contractual obligations to supply these cartridges in view of the shortage. In March 2006, Amylin Pharmaceutical''s senior management presented Wockhardt UK with a plaque in "recognition of Wockhardt''s support and dedication to the launch of Byetta.

Over half of the Wockhardt Ltd's revenue comes from the European Union and the US markets.