Today I got a visit from two drug reps from Roche Canada . The first is someone that has been around for a while, dealing with rituximab (Rituxan) She introduced her replacement because she was now going to be responsible for tocilizumab (Actemra), the anti-IL6 molecule which just recently received the go-ahead from the FDA in the states. I asked her why they needed two reps since they would be seeing the same MDs about the same diseases for the same company. From what I could figure out, it seems that in the States, Genentech markets Rituxan while Roche, in cooperation with a Japanese company Chugai, markets Actemra. Apparently this made it necessary for Roche Canada, which markets both, to have two different reps, one for each product, since in some way they are competing with each other. To make matters worse, Roche already owns part of Genentech and is now bidding to buy it out completely. The whole arrangement is so bizarre and impractical you would swear it was a government scheme.