Aldara Cream

Imiquimod with the brand name Aldara belongs to a group of drugs called immune response modifiers. 3M’s pharmaceuticals division obtained the FDA approval in 1997 as a treatment for external genital and perianal warts and in 2004 for the treatment of superficial basal cell carcinoma. This cream is commonly used topically to treat warts on…

Dosage form

Pack size





Generic Name (Ingredient)

Each 100 Mg Cream Contains 5 Mg Imiquimod.

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In 1997: Aldara was approved by the FDA as a treatment for external genital and perianal warts. 3M received the first approval.

In 2004: it was marketed by 3M as a treatment for superficial basal cell carcinoma.

In 2006: 3M sold its pharmaceutical business in America to Graceway and in Europe to Meda AB.

In 2011: the patent on imiquimod expired. Graceway declared bankruptcy and Medicis Pharmaceutical bought its branding and approvals.

In 2015: Imiquimod is available worldwide under many brands.

Medical Uses

This patient-applied cream is indicated for the treatment of

  • genital warts
  • superficial basal cell carcinoma
  • actinic keratosis
  • melanoma skin cancer

Mechanism of action

The active substance in Aldara cream is called Imiquimod; it is an immune-response modifier that uses the immune system to bring about its effect. When the cream is applied to the skin, it acts locally on the immune system, the body’s natural defenses and trigger the release of cytokines including interferon. Interferon is a protein; it helps to kill the viruses that cause warts or the abnormal cells in the skin that develop into skin cancer or keratoses.

Aldara Market

Media has bought exclusive European rights to a new formulation of imiquimod from Graceway Pharmaceuticals. This newly approved formulation in the US and Canada is 3,75% imiquimod topical cream that is indicated for the treatment of actinic keratosis (AK). Today, Meda markets a higher strength (5%) of Aldara in Europe. Sales of Aldara were approximately 500 MSEK in 2009 that exceed $360 million

E.Fougera & Co., a leading specialty pharmaceutical manufacturer, also announced it has received first generic approval from the FDA for Imiquimod Cream 5%; this cream is generically equivalent to Aldara® by Graceway Pharmaceuticals and substitutable for all indications.

Perrigo Company, a leading global healthcare supplier announced it received FDA approval from the FDA to manufacture and market Imiquimod Cream, 5%. They will vertically integrate this product with their own API. This product is the generic equivalent of Graceway Pharmaceuticals Aldara® Cream, 5%, a topical treatment for actinic keratoses on the face or scalp, superficial basal cell carcinoma, and external genital and perianal warts. Wolters Kluwer Health measured that Aldara ® had sales of approximately $382 million prior to generic market formation.


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