US drugmaker Pfizer said today that its first quarter earnings jumped 10% despite a 13% fall in sales of its best-selling anti-cholesterol drug Lipitor.

Net earnings at the world's biggest pharmaceuticals company grew to $2.22 billion for the January-March period, from $2.01 billion the same time last year. Revenues were $16.50 billion, down from $16.58 billion, the company said, with Lipitor contributing sales of $2.39 billion, down from $2.76 billion.

International revenues grew 2% despite a 25% drop in foreign Lipitor sales, while revenues inside the US were down 3%.

The figures do not include gains from the $2.4 billion sale of capsule-maker unit Capsugel to private-equity firm KKR, announced in early April.