Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News
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Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News
Pharmaguy curates and provides insights into selected drug industry news and issues.
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Major #Pharma Companies Sued for Colluding to Raise Insulin Prices

Major #Pharma Companies Sued for Colluding to Raise Insulin Prices | Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News | Scoop.it

The latest dustup over the rising price of insulin has found its way to a federal court, where several consumers are accusing the three biggest manufacturers — Sanofi, Eli Lilly, and Novo Nordisk — of running a coordinated scheme that has caused patients economic harm.

 

The lawsuit arrives two months after Senator Bernie Sanders (D-Vt.) and Representative Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) asked the Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission to investigate the companies for price collusion. They cited a pattern in which prices for insulin often rose in tandem over several years and expressed concern the drug makers conspired to raise prices and, as a result, drove up the cost for patients and taxpayers.

 

Indeed, the lawsuit makes similar allegations, charging the companies raised prices on their drugs by more than 150 percent and that, as a result, some consumers pay almost $900 each month. “Drugs that used to cost $25 per prescription now cost between $300 and $450 a month,” according to the lawsuit, which was filed in federal court in Boston and seeks class-action status.

 

The latest accusations follow months of reports about skyrocketing costs for insulin (read “Soaring Insulin Prices Impact Patients Every Day!”; http://sco.lt/7iQKZt ).

 

A study last year, for instance, in the Journal of the American Medical Association found the price for a milliliter of insulin climbed 197 percent from $4.34 per to $12.92 between 2002 and 2013. More than 29 million Americans, or 9.3 percent of the population, have some form of diabetes, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

 

Pharma Guy's insight:

Also read “Sanofi & Novo Nordisk Raise Diabetes Drug Prices in "Lockstep" With One Another”; http://sco.lt/7sltK5  and “Why Is Insulin So Expensive In The U.S.?”; http://sco.lt/9K9FJJ  and “Soaring Insulin Prices Impact Patients Every Day!”; http://sco.lt/7iQKZt 

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#Pharma CEOs Fill in the Drug Pricing Debate "Gaps"

#Pharma CEOs Fill in the Drug Pricing Debate "Gaps" | Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News | Scoop.it
Several factors are being overlooked when discussing drug pricing in the U.S., three pharma CEOs say.


The public is getting overly simple arguments in the debate about drug pricing, three pharma CEOs said Monday.


The issue first took center stage last September when Martin Shkreli, then-CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals, raised the price of a specialty drug from $13.50 to $750 per pill.


Eli Lilly CEO John Lechleiter said Monday the public is not getting the full picture. "Some of the noise you hear about drug pricing neglects the fact that we often must pay deep discounts in a market-based environment where we're competing in many cases against other alternative therapies, including those low-cost generics," he told CNBC's "Squawk on the Street." 


In another interview, Novartis CEO Joseph Jimenez said "innovation has to continue to be rewarded or we're just not going to be able to see the kind of breakthroughs that we have seen" on cancer research, specifically regarding the uses and benefits of the cancer-fighting drug Gleevec. 


"We continued to show that the drug was valuable in other indications in cancer and so we needed to be reared for that innovation and we're pricing according to that," he told CNBC's "Squawk Alley" on Monday.

Pharma Guy's insight:

The 3rd CEO is Pfizer's Ian Read who famously who suggested we look at the "other side of the ledger"; http://bit.ly/ianpish 

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Failed Alzheimer’s Trial Does Not Kill Leading Theory of Disease

Failed Alzheimer’s Trial Does Not Kill Leading Theory of Disease | Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News | Scoop.it

A drug that was seen as a major test of the leading theory behind Alzheimer’s disease has failed in a large trial of people with mild dementia. Critics of the ‘amyloid hypothesis’, which posits that the disease is triggered by a build-up of amyloid protein in the brain, have seized on the results as evidence of its weakness. But the jury is still out on whether the theory will eventually yield a treatment.

Proponents of the theory note that the particular way in which solanezumab, the drug involved in the trial, works could have led to the failure, rather than a flaw in the hypothesis itself. And many trials are ongoing to test whether solanezumab — or others that target amyloid — could work in people at risk of the disease who have not yet shown symptoms, or even in people with Alzheimer’s, despite the latest negative result.

“I’m extremely disappointed for patients, but this, for me, doesn’t change the way I think about the amyloid hypothesis,” says Reisa Sperling, a neurologist at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts. She is leading one of several ongoing ‘prevention’ trials that is testing solanezumab, and other drugs that aim to reduce the build-up of amyloid ‘plaques’, in people at risk of developing Alzheimer’s.

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