Rexahn, Vivus Believe the World Needs 2 More ED Drugs

Last Updated Feb 12, 2009 6:00 AM EST

Two companies are developing new erectile dysfunction drugs, even though there's already three on the market and one of those -- Pfizer's Viagra -- is set to go generic between 2011 and 2013.

Rexahn is developing a compound called Zoraxel and Vivus is developing Avanafil. Rexahn is in Phase 2 and Vivus is in Phase 3 with their research, according to the AccessRx blog.

There has been renewed interest in male sexual dysfunction in the industry over the last few weeks. Pfizer announced a deal to develop a "penis-straightening" drug called Xiaflex. J&J got a European approval for Priligy, an anti-premature ejaculation pill. And, of course, Swiss authorities announced an investigation into alleged ED drug price fixing.

But Viagra and Eli Lilly's Cialis have carved out the market between them. Bayer's Levitra is a distant third. Of the two new pills, one claims to be fast-acting, the other to have fewer side effects. But neither of those factors has been a significant complaint against the existing drugs. And with generic Viagra on the way, it's hard to see new entrants making much headway.