The antidepressant Aplenzin (bupropion hydrobromide) is protected by patents, which prohibit a generic version of the drug from being sold in the United States. However, the first patent is set to expire in June 2026, which is the earliest predictable date that a generic Aplenzin may be available. There are generic versions of other brand-name bupropion products, but these drugs are not equivalent to Aplenzin.
Can I Buy Generic Aplenzin?
Aplenzin™ (bupropion hydrobromide) is a prescription medication approved for the treatment of depression. It is an extended-release version of bupropion and is taken just once a day in the morning. It is different from all other bupropion products (which contain bupropion hydrochloride, instead of bupropion hydrobromide).
Aplenzin is made by Biovail Corporation for sanofi-aventis U.S., LLC. Currently, Aplenzin is protected by patents that prevent any generic versions from being sold in the United States.
When Will a Generic Version Be Available?
The first patents for Aplenzin currently expire in June 2026. This is the earliest predictable date that a generic version could become available.
However, there are other circumstances that could come up to extend or shorten this exclusivity period. This could include such things as lawsuits or other patents for specific Aplenzin uses. Once the drug goes off-patent, there may be several companies that manufacture a generic Aplenzin drug.
Is Bupropion a Generic Aplenzin?
No -- bupropion is the active ingredient in Aplenzin (as well as numerous other medications), but it is not a generic version of it. There are generic versions of other brand-name bupropion products (Wellbutrin®, Wellbutrin SR®, Wellbutrin XL®, and Zyban®), but these medications are not equivalent to Aplenzin.
If your insurance company does not cover Aplenzin, there is a good chance that they will cover a generic version of one of the other bupropion products. Check with your healthcare provider and your insurance company about using one of these other products.
Written by/reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last reviewed by: KristiMonson, PharmD;
List of references (click here):
Aplenzin [package insert]. Bridgewater, NJ: sanofi-aventis U.S. LLC;2011 July.
Food and Drug Administration, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. Electronic orange book: approved drug products with therapeutic equivalence evaluations. FDA Web site. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/cder/ob/. Accessed May 17, 2010.
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