Updated from 10:14 a.m. EDT

On the heels of a swine flu-related rally yesterday of pharmaceutical stocks, Bristol-Myers Squibb ( BMY) reported a 3% uptick in profit.

The New York-based company posted earnings of $921 million, or 32 cents a share, compared with $891 million, or 33 cents, in the same period last year. Excluding one-time items, earnings would have been 48 cents, in-line with analysts' forecast.

According to an article on Monday on RealMoney.com, the company is in the midst of a transition. In the coming years, the article says, Bristol-Myers will lose patent protection on some of its best-selling drugs, such as Plavix, Avapro and Abilify. As a result, it has been scrambling to develop a new pipeline of drugs.

Sales in the first quarter grew 3% to $5.02 billion from $4.89 million last year.

Sales of blood thinner Plavix, which accounts for almost half of company sales, reached $1.44 billion, up 10%. Sales of antidepressant Abilify climbed 30% to $589 million.

During the quarter, Bristol-Myers spun out a portion of Mead Johnson Nutrition ( MJN) into a publicly traded company, retaining an 83% stake.

The company expects full-year earnings in the range of $1.58 to $1.73 a share.

Bristol shares were recently falling 2.1 to $20.10.

Bristol rival Pfizer ( PFE), which also reported first-quarter earnings Tuesday, saw slightly lower profit based in part on generic competition and a strong dollar.

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