Merck seeking shop for new-generation analgesic

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With a big new wave of prescription pain relievers expected next year, Merck & Co. looking for an ad agency to handle its as-yet unapproved brand, Vioxx. The drugs, called COX-2 inhibitors, have no stomach side effects. Those vying for the estimated $40 million to $50 million brand are all non-roster agencies: DDB Needham Worldwide, Grey Advertising, Messner Vetere Berger McNamee Schmetterer/Euro RSCG and Warwick Baker O'Neill, all New York.

Copyright August 1998, Crain Communications Inc.

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