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Novartis posts $2.3 bn third quarter profit

Geneva, Oct 21 (DPA) Swiss pharmaceutical giant Novartis posted a third quarter profit of nearly $2.3 billion Thursday – up 10 percent on the same period last year.

Net sales were up at $12.57 billion, a 13 percent gain on the third quarter of 2009.

Novartis said its recently launched products made up 20 percent of the sales, about a 40 percent increase over the previous year.

Some of the company’s key products, including Gleevec, a medicine for leukemia, will lose their patents in 2012, making new product lines key for future Novartis sales.

Vaccine sales at Novartis performed well, the company said, attributing the results to higher volumes of seasonal flu vaccine shipments.

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