Valeant Pharmaceuticals wasn't kidding when it said it was ready to rumble with new promotional spending. Its antifungal treatment for toenails, Jublia, will go to the Super Bowl this Sunday. And that's no cheap ticket.
The hepatitis C payer negotiations may be making the biggest headlines these days, but diabetes contracts were making headlines first. And if Eli Lilly and its drugs are any indication, those headlines are likely to continue.
Drugmakers raise U.S. prices to make more money. This isn't a surprise to anyone. It's a basic business strategy, and the U.S. market is among the few where pharma companies still have considerable pricing power. But thanks to a steady flow of expensive new cancer therapies--and a public brouhaha over the cost of next-gen treatments for hepatitis C--drug prices are on center stage.
Prominent cancer doctors have balked at adopting a new Sanofi drug, Zaltrap, because they decided its benefits weren't worth the cost. Pharmacy benefits managers, notably Express Scripts, have nixed drugs from their formularies in favor of competing--and less expensive--options. And Gilead Sciences' pricing poster child Sovaldi has private payers and government programs so spooked, they're considering limiting its use to the sickest patients, at least until they can use soon-to-be-approved rivals to negotiate better pricing. Click here to read the full report on FiercePharmaMarketing >>
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Novartis' Cosentyx may be the first next-gen psoriasis treatment to hit the U.S. market, but it certainly won't be the last--and the Swiss drugmaker knows it. So while competitors usher their own prospects down the regulatory pathway, the company is girding for the price war it envisions in its future.
Express Scripts CMO Steve Miller has a number for you: $4 billion. That's the amount U.S. payers will save on hepatitis C drugs this year, thanks to cost-cutting deals with Gilead Sciences and AbbVie. And Miller doesn't mind saying that Express Scripts started the trend.
Keryx Biopharmaceuticals' launch for hyperphosphatemia med Auryxia is officially underway, and the way incoming CEO Greg Madison sees it, the company has reason to be optimistic. While the New York-based company has its rivals--and competitive ones, at that--the drugmaker has what it takes to carve out its own corner of the market, he says.
Bayer and Johnson & Johnson have plunked down hundreds of millions to study the anticoagulant Xarelto for one use after another. Armed with more indications than any of its warfarin-alternative rivals, Xarelto now has the biggest share of that market.
Last year, Pfizer got a federal judge to toss an investor lawsuit tied to its now-withdrawn pain drug Bextra. But that wasn't the only investor suit raising similar issues--namely that Pfizer's board had not been forthright about marketing allegations involving Bextra and other drugs.
Depomed has big plans for the Nucynta franchise it picked up last week from Johnson & Johnson for $1.05 billion, and they start with a relaunch.