Eli Lilly announced that the supply of its diabetes drug Mounjaro has improved in the U.S. after facing widespread shortages for several months. The pharmaceutical company has been working to increase production capacity for the treatment and other drugs amid rising demand.
Eli Lilly’s efforts to expand manufacturing capacity for Mounjaro are starting to pay off, with U.S. product shipments of Mounjaro recently increasing and inventory levels at U.S. drug wholesalers improving. The drug is experiencing high demand, driven in part by its off-label use for significant weight loss. U.S. regulators may potentially approve the drug for weight loss later this year, further increasing demand.
Mounjaro generated $1.4 billion in sales for the third quarter, contributing to Eli Lilly beating expectations on both the top and bottom lines. While Mounjaro supply has improved in the U.S., it remains tight internationally. Eli Lilly aims to double the production capacity for drugs like Mounjaro and its other diabetes treatment Trulicity. The company’s new facility in North Carolina is now online to provide additional drug assembly capacity, and it has invested over $3 billion to build two new manufacturing sites in Indiana.
Eli Lilly CEO David Ricks stated that the company is still aggressively planning further production buildup for Mounjaro and other drugs. Eli Lilly has entered into third-party manufacturing agreements with a diverse portfolio of contractors to secure additional capacity. Ricks emphasized that addressing capacity challenges is an ongoing effort for the company.
In the weight loss drug space, Eli Lilly’s main rival, Novo Nordisk, is also dealing with supply constraints for diabetes drug Ozempic and obesity treatment Wegovy. The weight loss industry saw increased investment from companies like Eli Lilly and Pfizer after the success of drugs like Ozempic and Wegovy. Initial studies have indicated that Eli Lilly’s Mounjaro may be more effective at reducing weight than its competitors.