Five things for pharma marketers to know: Monday, April 4, 2016

Photo credit: Bill Brooks/Creative Commons

1. Drugmakers greatly increased the prices of widely used medications over the past five years. Four of the best-selling 10 drugs in the U.S. saw their prices increase more than 100% since 2011, according to Reuters. AbbVie's rheumatoid arthritis drug, Humira, topped the list with a 126% increase. (Reuters)

2. Gilead Sciences acquired Nimbus Therapeutics in a deal worth up to $1.2 billion. Nimbus' lead asset, NDI-010976, recently entered a Phase-II study as an experimental treatment for nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH).

3. Eli Lilly's experimental cholesterol-lowering drug evacetrapib failed to lower patients' risk of heart attack or stroke when compared to those taking placebo. Lilly halted the trial in October. (NYT)

4. Cost watchdog groups bring down prices. Roche signaled that it is open to discuss new ways to set prices for its cancer treatments in the United Kingdom after the National Health Service decided to stop paying for two of its cancer drugs, Avastin and Kadcyla. At the time, the Swiss drugmaker described the NHS decision as “stupid” and “completely arbitrary.” (Bloomberg)

5. The World Health Organization will discuss drug shortages at its meeting next month. One of the solutions to be weighed will be introducing a minimum price for certain treatments to keep them on the market. (Reuters)