ELITE 2020 Strategist Brian Peters of Medexus Pharma

Brian Peters

VP, Sales & Marketing

Medexus Pharma

Helping Challenger Brands Thrive

In his nearly three decades in the pharma industry, Brian Peters has proven to be adept at marketing strategy.

During his first decade in the industry, Brian held increasing levels of responsibility in marketing at GD Searle, where his strategic acumen helped grow Ambien sales over time—achieving a staggering 90% market share. While at Searle, he also managed the marketing responsibilities for the U.S. cardiovascular business and created a new department focused on driving marketing productivity “best practices” that generated first-year savings of $1.2 million.

Most recently, Brian took on the challenge of driving the strategy of an entirely new venture formed in late 2012—the U.S. specialty pharmaceutical business of Medac Pharma, (since acquired and now known as Medexus Pharma, a wholly owned subsidiary of Canadian-based Medexus Pharmaceuticals, Inc.). Brian currently has responsibility for all sales and marketing efforts, and launched the company’s first product in the U.S., Rasuvo, a methotrexate (MTX) autoinjector for RA.

Brian’s strategic skills would be critical here as Rasuvo is the ultimate challenger brand, taking on a market dominated by huge brands such as Xeljanz, Enbrel, Humira, and Remicade. While oral MTX has been a long-standing, first-line standard of treatment in RA, many biologic agents with deep pockets were making inroads to convincing rheumatologists to prescribe them earlier than needed.

In fact, Brian and his team’s research showed rheumatologists believe that greater bioavailability leads to greater RA control, that subcutaneous delivery of MTX has fewer first-pass GI side effects than oral MTX, and that titrating to the optimal MTX dose until a complete response is achieved is critical before turning to a biologic agent. So Brian positioned Rasuvo as the choice for “MTXtended” relief of RA after oral MTX inadequate response, extending the time to when a biologic was really needed. The strategy has proven effective, as the switches from oral MTX continue. More importantly, it provided physicians with a much-needed effective, less expensive alternative before going right to an expensive biologic agent.

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