In 1998 Pfizer launched Viagra® (sildenafil) for erectile dysfunction. Post launch, Pfizer investigated a second potential indication for sildenafil to treat Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension (PAH).
Pfizer was interested in exploring the possibility of creating a separate brand name for sildenafil in PAH given that the indication differed significantly from erectile dysfunction. At the time, the FDA had placed a moratorium on introducing multiple brand names for an individual active ingredient. Pfizer asked InterbrandHealth to conduct research to support the argument for a second brand name for sildenafil in PAH, which would then be presented to the FDA for consideration.
InterbrandHealth created a customized research approach to evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of different naming scenarios for sildenafil. The foundation of the study was our 10/10® Brand Name Evaluatiom, which allowed us to explore different prescribing, dispensing and administrating scenarios and how they would be impacted by the various naming approaches under consideration. Through the research we found that there would be poor uptake for the treatment if marketed under Viagra and that a new name would in fact be a “safer” approach.
We used our research findings to support the selection of Revatio®, a coined name that was sufficiently differentiated from Viagra and to make specific arguments to the FDA supporting the acceptability of the name from a safety and regulatory standpoint.
Revatio was approved by the FDA in 2005 on first submission and is now marketed globally.