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Generic Name

Generic Name

Generic name or International Nonproprietary Name (INN)  is the official nonproprietary or generic name given to a pharmaceutical substance, as designated by the World Health Organization (WHO). Drugs from the same therapeutic or chemical class are usually given names with the same stem. Stems are mostly placed word-finally, but in some cases word-initial stems are used. They are collected in a publication informally known as the Stem Book.

From the marketing perspective it is important that for one INN or Generic Name of the ingredient there may be plenty of Brand Names advertised by different manufacturers on different markets.

Comparison of naming conventions:

INN: paracetamol
British Approved Name (BAN): paracetamol
United States Adopted Name (USAN): acetaminophen
Other generic names: N-acetyl-p-aminophenol, APAP, p-acetamidophenol, acetamol, …
Proprietary names: Tylenol, Panadol, Panamax, Perdolan, Calpol, Doliprane, Tachipirina, Ben-u-ron, Atasol, Adol, …
IUPAC name: N-(4-hydroxyphenyl)acetamide

About Piotr Wrzosiński

Piotr Wrzosinski is a sociologist focused on digital marketing in highly regulated industries. He combines experience from top players in tobacco, financial services, and pharma with a passion to the content marketing and technology. All opinions posted are his own unless stated otherwise.
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