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Farm Animal Brands Key to Novartis Animal Health Growth

BASEL - Novartis Animal Health has been among the fastest growing companies in the animal health industry over the past three years, fueled not only by its strong stable of veterinary products for pets, but also by its continued emphasis and commitment on the growth of its brands in the livestock sector.

This point was reaffirmed by Novartis Global Head George Gunn, speaking at an event held in Munich, Germany. There, he focused on the growth of the Denagard and Tiamutin brands globally for the company in the swine market, and touched on the successful new vaccine introductions in the US cattle market, as well.

"The farm animal business, including products for cattle, sheep, swine and poultry, represent 40 percent of the overall Novartis Animal Health business," said George Gunn. "We have a strong base of veterinary products for pets, which is a strong asset in that growing market sector, yet we are seeing very strong growth in the farm animal sector, and we are committed to growth in both of these business areas."

Denagard and Tiamutin are core brands within the farm animal portfolio, and Novartis has capitalized on bringing the Denagard brand back to the Novartis stable of brands following the purchase of Denagard for the US and Canada markets in the fall of 2005. Novartis now has a strong Denagard / Tiamutin offering around the globe after originally discovering the pleuromutilin class of drugs over 25 years ago.

Novartis pioneered tiamulin, the active ingredient in Denagard / Tiamutin, and markets it under the Denagard name in North America, and the Tiamutin brand name in other key swine markets throughout the world. It is a member of the pleuromutilin class of antibiotics, which was originally discovered by Novartis Animal Health.

Denagard / Tiamutin is a broad-spectrum antibiotic with formulations to treat both enteric and respiratory diseases. It has been used by many producers and has proven its value in ease of use, safety and efficacy in treating some of the most troublesome swine diseases.

In support of the Denagard and Tiamutin portfolio, Novartis Animal Health has formed an expert swine scientific advisory board, comprising leading swine vet specialists from around the world. The advisory board will help Novartis Animal Health stay abreast of the latest in swine health issues and provide an unbiased scientific sounding board as the company continues to look for better ways to help producers fight costly swine diseases.

While focused on Denagard and Tiamutin in key swine producing countries, Gunn points out that the cattle, sheep and poultry markets are also important growth areas for the company. In 2006 alone, Novartis introduced five innovative new vaccine combinations to its industry leading cattle vaccine line - including the Vira Shield 6+VL5HB, and the Clostridium Perfringens Type A Toxoid - and expects more innovation to come from its research and development programs at six sites around the world.

"We are a company committed to Research & Development, last year spending 10 percent of our sales on animal health R&D alone," Gunn says. "We intend to grow and expand our portfolio of products, continuing to target major unmet needs in large therapeutic markets as well as optimising current product offerings."

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