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Launching Zevalin

Executive Summary

The market success of Zevalin, Idec Pharmaceutical's second product will largely depend on how well the company has built the requisite commercial infrastructure prior to launch. Idec benefited from having watched how Genentech handled the launch of Idec's first drug, Rituxan. But Zevalin raises unique issues including the need to establish a logistical framework for this first-of-its-kind regimen, in which radiation oncologists play a significant role in the therapy. A disappointment would heighten the uncertainty around the launch of other kinds of innovative products--Idec's certainly, and also those of other companies. The industry will be watching this as a barometer of potential for whether other highly complex therapies whose delivery entails the use of several types of specialists can succeed.

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