Pharmaceutical

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The Canadian pharmaceutical market is the ninth largest in the world. What are the biggest pharmaceutical stocks on the TSX and TSXV?

The Canadian pharmaceutical market is the ninth largest in the world and accounts for 2 percent of the global prescription drug market. But what are the biggest Canadian pharma stocks?

Many successful Canadian drug companies are in the late stages of clinical trials; they may also have brought pharmaceutical products to market, or set up partnerships to develop products, both at home and globally.

According to the Canadian government, the country's pharma companies are involved in research and development to bring new or improved patented therapies to market, and are developing generic versions of bio-equivalent drugs that have had patents expire. Additionally, gene and cell therapies and nanomedicines are emerging fields in the Canadian pharmaceutical market.


To help investors be aware of major players, the Investing News Network has profiled the five biggest Canadian pharma stocks on both the TSX and TSXV in terms of market capitalization. This list was compiled using TradingView’s stock screener, and all data was accurate as of January 21, 2022.

1. Bausch Health Companies

Market cap: C$11.51 billion; current share price: C$31.38

Bausch Health Companies (TSX:BHC)develops, manufactures and markets a range of pharma, medical device and over-the-counter products primarily for the therapeutic areas of eye health, gastroenterology and dermatology. It has manufacturing facilities in Canada's Manitoba, Ontario and Quebec provinces.

In late December 2020, Poland’s Office for Registration of Medicinal Products, Medical Devices and Biocidal Products granted Bausch Health an additional new indication for its Dexaven (dexamethasone phosphate) solution, a corticosteroid used to reduce inflammation, for the treatment of COVID-19 in adult and adolescent patients who require oxygen therapy.

In more recent news, Quebec-based Bausch Health is spinning out its eye health division Bausch + Lomb with a planned initial public offering in 2022.

2. Jamieson Wellness

Market cap: C$1.5 billion; current share price: C$37.08

Established in 1922, Jamieson Wellness (TSX:JWEL) is a Canadian brand that manufactures, distributes and markets natural health products in Canada and internationally. The company’s product lines include sports nutrition and specialty supplements under its Progressive, Precision and Iron Vegan brands.

In late 2021, Jamieson reported that its revenue went up 6.4 percent to C$112.4 million in Q3, compared to C$105.6 million in the third quarter of 2020. The rise in the Canadian pharma stock’s revenue was attributed to a 3.1 percent revenue jump for its Jamieson Brands segment and 18.4 percent growth from strategic partnerships.

3. Knight Therapeutics 

Market cap: C$657.98 million; current share price: C$5.32

Headquartered in Quebec, Knight Therapeutics (TSX:GUD) is focused on acquiring or in-licensing and commercializing specialty pharmaceutical products. The company is targeting the Canadian and Latin American markets. Knight owns pan-Latin American pharmaceutical company Biotoscana Investments, and Knight's Latin American subsidiaries operate under United Medical, Biotoscana Farma and Laboratorio LKM.

In early January, Biotscana Farma was granted approval for two new drugs in Colombia: the Halaven (eribulin) injection for the treatment of metastatic breast cancer, and liposarcoma and Lenvima (lenvatinib) for the treatment of radioiodine refractory differentiated thyroid cancer and unresectable hepatocellular carcinoma.

4. HLS Therapeutics

Market cap: C$486.77 million; current share price: C$14.98

Next on this list of biggest Canadian pharma stocks is HLS Therapeutics (TSXV:IPA), which is focused on the acquisition and commercialization of pharmaceuticals in North American markets, from late-stage development therapies to commercial-stage promoted and established branded products. HLS's product portfolio targets the central nervous system and cardiovascular therapeutic areas.

In late 2021, HLS reported that its revenue increased 15 percent to C$15.1 million in Q3, compared to C$13.1 million in the third quarter of 2020. It attributed its revenue growth to strength for its “foundational products,” as well as sales for Vascepa, a first-in-class treatment for reducing the risk of major adverse cardiac events in statin-treated patients. HLS has a promotional agreement with Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) for Vascepa in Canada.

5. Theratechnologies

Market cap: C$342.44 million; current share price: C$3.68

Biopharmaceutical company Theratechnologies (TSX:TH) is developing and commercializing therapies addressing unmet medical needs, specifically in the areas of hepatology, oncology and HIV.

The company was awarded the 2021 Innovation Award in the Life Sciences category at the 31st ADRIQ Innovation Awards Gala. In December 2021, Theratechnologies submitted a supplemental biologics license application to the US Food and Drug Administration for its intravenous push form of administration for Trogarzo. The IV Push Trogarzo program is designed to improve the lives and treatment outcomes for patients living with HIV.

This is an updated version of an article first published by the Investing News Network in 2016.

Don’t forget to follow us @INN_LifeScience for real-time news updates!

Securities Disclosure: I, Melissa Pistilli, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.

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