MannKind’s inhaled insulin Afrezza is now available by prescription in the United States. MannKind’s global marketing partner Sanofi announced Tuesday that the U.S. retail pharmacies have started selling the only inhaled insulin. Afrezza is expected to boost the French drugmaker’s flagging diabetes drug sales. Novo Nordisk and Eli Lilly are giving Sanofi some tough competition for sales of traditional injectable insulin.
Developed by MannKind, Afrezza promises to be more convenient than injectable insulin. But it is surrounded by a number of concerns after the failure of Pfizer’s inhaled insulin Exubera. Pfizer’s drug won the USFDA approval in 2006, and experts were expecting it to be a blockbuster.