(1) Will JNJ/Cordis win the war in defending their coronary stent patents?
(2) If they fail in their effort to keep better stents; i.e., from Guidant, AVE, etc., how will they defend their installed base, without resorting to a pricing war? Any ideas? My assumption that there are much better stents available is based on Cordis' low market share in Europe, Japan, etc. My concern for a pricing war is based on how Cordis has attempted to protect their installed base in these markets.
(3) Assuming Guidant, AVE, and Medtronic's B stent become available, does anyone have an opinion as to an eventual average sales price for stents. Despite PTCA balloon prices haven fallen by 60% or more, once the industry began competing on price, the analysts seem reluctant to project deep price declines for stents? It gives me no comfort knowing that the all the analysts were "asleep at the wheel" with regard to PTCA balloons, but I am missing something with regard to stents? Or, is this another case of the anlaysts propping up the price of stocks. Any opinions?