Only 4 more years and ticking

In 2019, 4 years from now the first chemical DMT should come off patent. One can predict that the price of drug should fall by 90% as the generics enter the MS space. The $20 billion market will probably burst, unless the MS Cartel stops this. 

Are people going to spend time developing new DMT?

Will the companies still be interested in MS?….the Neuros at ECTRIMS will have to get to the meetings under their own stream, the VIP lounges will be gone and they will have to buy their own coffee. Is this the Ghost of MS future? 

Will the ECTRIMS lavish be back to stands of science/yesteryear?

Up to now you have had the biologicals. These are expensive to make and because they ensure that competitors have to do a trial to show bio-equivalence (they are the same),  it adds millions to the drug development costs,….the new generics are therefore not much cheaper (e.g about 10% less) if you are a biological. We are in he throws of the COP-wars as competitor companies try and muscle in on the $4.2 billion sales of glaterimer acetate. Even Teva are taking on daily glaterimer acetate with their three times a week formulation. 

However why pay thousands for Gilenya when you will be able to get it at a fraction of the cost.  What are all those companies who are developing Gilenya me-toos going to charge? By the time they have finished their phase III trials and gone through the marketing authority 2019 will be upon us. Maybe it is the saving grace Gilenya is a second time as you have to fail an expensive drug first before the cheap option.  Maybe the me toos could have a first line licence.

Are you a “neurofen” (spelt wrong I know) type of person or a supermarket Ibuprofen type of person who doesn’t want to pay 5-10 times the price for a bit of cardboard packaging. There are plenty of people like this out there who like paying for cardboard,look at the costs of the interferons

I have no idea what will happen, you can be sure Pharma will wring-out the last bit of profit.

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  • "Up to now you have had the biologicals. These are expensive to make…"

    What percentage of the going price is attributed to the cost of manufacturing the biologics? I suspect a fraction. I wonder when Gilenya goes generic if the cost of the biologics will be slashed also. I think the answer is it has to.

    • You are correct by the original issue for beta interferon was the price of manufacture requiring a high cost, but now manufacture of drug is a small fraction of the drug. It will be interesting if there is a price war or a price cartel like there is now in the USA there is very little competition of price they all cost the same…how can that be?

  • Current MS drugs are as appealing as a dog's breakfast. There is easily room, desire, and willingness to pay for something better. If a therapy like GNbAC1 pans out MSers will quickly embrace it or anything else which proves safer and more effective than what is presently available. A generic dog's breakfast? No thanks!

    • You are right that the existing "highly effective" drugs are turning out to be a dud when it comes to important markers such as brain atrophy.

      Currently being on Copaxone I would rather add Albutoral to Copaxone than gamble with the new generation drugs. It seems this combination produces a relapse rate (0.09/year) that none of the new therapies can touch. Its too bad that a phase 3 trial cannot be conducted since Albutorol is generic but all studies point to it being neuroprotective. I guess the researchers from Harvard are way ahead of the game:

    • We have to wait and see if GNbAC1 if a game changer or a duff idea , if it is a game changer then the current crop will be dumped,but if it is duff maybe them generics sound more appealling.

      However on that note it is the Albutoral paper was published in 2010 I wonder what is happening next?

      As to the oral tolerance I checked which has gone bust, the web page is now trying to sell you a car

    • There is a lot of interest in the Beta 2 Adrenergic Receptor Agonists (which Albutoral is a drug in this class).

      I think the researchers at Harvard thought it acted through suppression of IL-12 but it looks like it has a different MOA. At anyrate, the Phase 2 results are good enough for me to talk to my Neuro about.

      You ask what good are these types of trials. I think they are beneficial to MSers who are currently looking for something to try that has some results behind it. If my doctor agrees you can prescribe me Albutoral off-label. I think this is the case in Europe as well.

      So I find value in conducting these small scale studies if there is a basis for it.

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