catalentlogoCatalent Pharma Solutions, the leading global provider of advanced delivery technologies and development solutions for drugs, biologics, consumer health and animal health products, has announced that it has entered into an exclusive long-term supply agreement to produce Pfizer Inc.’s leading over-the-counter (OTC) heartburn treatment, Nexium 24HR (esomeprazole), also marketed as Nexium Control outside the United States.

Under the agreement, Catalent’s Winchester (Kentucky, USA) facility will formulate and manufacture the 20 mg Proton Pump Inhibitor drug into enteric coated, delayed release pellets using fluid bed technology. Catalent will also encapsulate these pellets into two-piece, hard-shell capsules, where the company has invested extensively in capsule banding technology required for OTC products.

Pfizer secured the exclusive global rights to market Nexium for the approved over-the-counter indications from AstraZeneca in 2012. Nexium 24HR is now the number one OTC heartburn brand in the US. AstraZeneca continues to manufacture and sell the prescription product.

“Nexium is one of the leading global OTC medicines and its manufacture is well suited to our recently expanded Winchester facility, where we have both the capacity and flexibility to accommodate programs of this scale,” commented Barry Littlejohns, Catalent’s President of Advanced Delivery Technologies. “We are proud to partner with Pfizer on delivering this important product to patients worldwide.”