AstraZeneca first-quarter net profits up

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Anglo-Swedish pharmaceuticals giant AstraZeneca announced Thursday a 4.7-percent rise in first-quarter net profits to $2.907 billion dollars (1.95 billion euros), despite lower sales.

Sales were down because of competition from generic brands of the drugs they produced, but that had been offset by strong growth in emerging markets, said chief executive David Brennan.

© 2011 AFP

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