Schering appoints WS to Asoprisnil brief

Pharma giant Schering is to launch an international PR and medical education push for Asoprisnil, its non-surgical female genital tumour treatment currently in phase III trials.

Weber Shandwick, alongside its sister Interpublic Group companies FCB Global Healthcare and FCB Pro Health, has been appointed to run the PR element of the campaign in all markets outside North America.

Despite low public awareness, uterine fibroids are the most common tumours of the female genital tract and are present in around 20 per cent of women of reproductive age.

Asoprisnil is the first oral fibroid treatment to reach such an advanced stage of clinical development and is the first non-surgical treatment under study for women with genital-tract tumours WS European healthcare practice MD Fiona Hall said: ‘Existing treatment options for women suffering from fibroids are surgical and can have a detrimental effect on women of reproductive age.’

‘We will raise awareness of an effective treatment for a distressing condition, and to provide women with increased alternatives in treatment,’ she added.

WS London director Antoinette Dale-Henderson, one of a batch of recent hires that has taken the agency’s UK healthcare headcount to 20, added: ‘We will be targeting healthcare professionals over the next 18 months, then [targeting] women.’

Asoprisnil will be co-marketed by TAP in the US and Canada, but Schering has the marketing licence for the rest of the world.

Three agencies are understood to have pitched for the account.

Schering’s UK operation is currently reviewing its PR across its primary- care portfolio (PRWeek, 15 October). WS said it was not pitching for that account.

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