4. Biogen Idec
4. Biogen Idec
Fortune 500 rank: 476
2011 revenue: $5.0 billion
2011 total shareholder return: 64.1%
Ticker: BIIB

An experimental drug poised to become the world's leading treatment for multiple sclerosis got investors excited about this Massachusetts-based drug-maker. Shares of Biogen Idec surged after studies showed the effectiveness of BG-12, which analysts estimate could generate up to $3 billion in annual sales.

Under relatively new CEO George Scangos, Biogen reported robust earnings. For 2011, profits rose by 23% to $1.23 billion or $5.04 per share. And Scangos was handsomely rewarded for that performance. He earned $11.3 million in salary, bonus and stock awards.

By Nin-Hai Tseng - Last updated May 07 2012: 10:52 AM ET