Eli Lilly on Tuesday reported lower-than-expected quarterly earnings due largely to heavy spending on research.
But the U.S. drugmaker posted better-than-expected sales in the first quarter, driven by its newer treatments for diabetes and cancer. And the company slightly raised its full-year profit view, thanks to a tax benefit in the quarter.
Lilly's stock traded more than 1.5 percent lower Tuesday morning.
Lilly further revised revenue and gross margin guidance higher due to a lower-than-anticipated impact from currency exchange, chairman and CEO John Lechleiter told CNBC's "Squawk Box."
"Currency is still a headwind, but our guidance adjustment at the top line at least shows it's going to be a little less of a headwind for the year," he said.
Lilly last year resumed earnings growth following three years of plunging sales for big products facing generic competition.
To restock its medicine chest and keep earnings growing over the long term, Lilly is conducting late-stage studies of experimental treatments for Alzheimer's disease, breast cancer, headaches and pain.
"As we said several years ago, we hoped at that time Lilly would be a new product story. I think that's proving out, and we're pleased with the first quarter," Lechleiter said.