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‘Life cycle management’ has become a popular term in the pharmaceutical industry. While the industry focuses on extending and improving the lives of patients, in this case the ‘life cycle’ involved is the economically productive life of a pharmaceutical product. That life begins with regulatory approval and, to a significant extent, ends at the point at which a generic competitor is able to enter the market and sell the drug at a lower cost. The length of that life is crucial in valuing the products of a pharmaceutical company and, where flagship products are involved, in valuing the company as well.

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