The Founder Of Merck’s First Large Generic Challenger Returns To The Infinite

Over the weekend, a towering figure in what became the generic drug industry returned to Infinity. Dr. K. Anji Reddy, the founder of the public company called Dr. Reddy’s Labs and based in India, is no more.

Back in 1985, Dr. Reddy launched the first generic challenger to Merck’s vaunted anti-hypertension franchise — in the form of a chemical called methyldopa (C10H13NO4). I’ve long-since forgotten the brand name under which Merck sold the drug (help me out here, readers! UPDATE: Bonus points to the erstwhile Salmon — see the comments to this post, on the main blog — the drug was branded as Aldomet — perfect!), but it was plain that Dr. Reddy aimed to shake up the global markets for all sorts of drugs — and that is precisely what he did.

Here’s a bit of the Bloomberg obit, from Sunday — do go read it all:

. . .K. Anji Reddy, the founder of Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories Ltd. (DRRD), India’s second-largest drugmaker, died Friday after “ailing for some time,” the company said. . . .

. . . .In 1985, Reddy started making methyldopa, an off-patent hypertension drug that Merck had discovered. A year later, Reddy listed his company on the Bombay Stock Exchange and four regional exchanges by selling 1.1 million shares to the public. Reddy’s passion for research led Dr. Reddy’s taking up drug discovery research in 1993 and was the first pharmaceutical company in India to initiate basic drug discovery research. . . .

Oh my. The stories I might tell, from those heady times. . . truly, I was but a pup. . . but suffice it to say that the Infinite has been enriched, by his return to it — just as our planet was enriched, by his all-too-brief visit to it. Sincerely, Namaste, Dr. Reddy!

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