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2006 - The Year in Drugs

2006 saw a number of advances in drug research and development, with many new drugs approved over a wide range of medical conditions. Below is a summary of the drugs that made their debut into the medical world in 2006.


  • Daytrana (methylphenidate) transdermal patch, a once daily transdermal patch formulation of methylphenidate for the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder


  • Omnaris (ciclesonide) nasal spray, an intranasal corticosteroid for the treatment of allergic rhinitis


  • Dacogen (decitabine) for injection, a hypomethylating agent for the treatment of myelodysplastic syndromes
  • Sprycel (dasatinib) tablets, oral tyrosine kinase inhibitor for the treatment of chronic myeloid leukemia and Ph+ acute lymphoblastic leukemia
  • Sutent (sunitinib) capsules, an oral multi-kinase inhibitor for the treatment of gastrointestinal stromal tumors and renal carcinoma
  • Vectibix (panitumumab) injection, a recombinant, human IgG2 kappa monoclonal antibody for the treatment of metastatic colorectal cancer
  • Zolinza (vorinostat) capsules, a histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitor for the treatment of cutaneous T-cell lymphoma


  • Ranexa (ranolazine) extended-release tablets, a novel antianginal and anti-ischemic agent for the treatment of chronic angina


  • Exubera (insulin human [rDNA origin]) inhalation powder, a rapid-acting, dry powder human insulin that is inhaled through the mouth for the treatment of type 1 and type 2 diabetes in adults
  • Januvia (sitagliptin phosphate) tablets, a dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4) inhibitor for the treatment of type 2 diabetes<//li>

Gastrointestinal Conditions

  • Amitiza (lubiprostone) capsules, a selective chloride channel activator for the treatment of constipation
  • Pylera (biskalcitrate potassium, metronidazole and tetracycline) capsules, a 3-in-1 triple therapy for the eradication of Helicobacter pylori

Hepatitis B

  • Tyzeka (telbivudine) tablets, a synthetic thymidine nucleoside analogue for the treatment of chronic hepatitis B


  • Prezista (darunavir) tablets, a protease inhibitor for the treatment of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)


  • Eraxis (anidulafungin) injection, an antifungal medicine of the echinocandin class for the treatment of candidemia
  • Noxafil (posaconazole) oral suspension, a triazole antifungal agent for the prevention of invasive fungal infections

Mental Health

  • Emsam (selegiline) transdermal system, a transdermal patch containing the monoamine oxidase inhibitor selegiline for the treatment of major depressive disorder
  • Invega (paliperidone) extended-release tablets, a once-daily oral atypical antipsychotic for the treatment of schizophrenia

Ophthalmic Conditions

  • Lucentis (ranibizumab) injection, a recombinant humanized IgG1 kappa isotype monoclonal antibody fragment for the treatment of wet age-related macular degeneration


  • Fentora (fentanyl) buccal tablets, an effervescent buccal formulation of the potent opioid analgesic fentanyl for the treatment of breakthrough pain in patients with cancer
  • Ionsys (fentanyl) iontophoretic transdermal system, a needle-free, patient-activated iontophoretic transdermal analgesic system for the treatment of acute postoperative pain
  • Opana ER (oxymorphone) ER tablets and Opana (oxymorphone) tablets, oral formulations of the opioid analgesic oxymorphone for the treatment of moderate-to-severe pain

Parkinson's Disease

Azilect (rasagiline) tablets, a monoamine oxidase -B inhibitor for the treatment of Parkinson's disease

Prevention of Disease

  • Gardasil (Quadrivalent Human Papillomavirus [Types 6, 11, 16, 18] Recombinant Vaccine) for the prevention of cervical cancer and other HPV-related diseases
  • RotaTeq (rotavirus vaccine, live, oral, pentavalent) for the prevention of rotavirus gastroenteritis
  • Zostavax (Zoster Vaccine Live (Oka/Merck)) for the prevention of shingles

Sexual Health

  • Polyphenon E (Veregen) (green tea polyphenol extract) ointment, a concentrate of catechines extracted from green tea leaves for the treatment of genital and perianal warts

Smoking Cessation

  • Chantix (varenicline) tablets, a partial nicotinic receptor agonist for the treatment of smoking cessation

Other Conditions

  • Elaprase (idursulfase) injection, a purified form of the human lysosomal enzyme iduronate-2-sulfatase for the treatment of Hunter Syndrome
  • Myozyme (alglucosidase alfa) injection, a recombinant formulation of the human enzyme acid alpha-glucosidase for the treatment of Pompe disease

Posted: January 2007