Five things for pharma marketers to know: Monday, December 7, 2015

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1. The FDA approved the first generic of cancer drug Gleevec, which is manufactured by Novartis and costs about $10,000 per month. Mumbai-based Sun Pharmaceutical said it will begin selling the first generic version of Gleevec on February 1. Gleevec's research and development was largely undertaken by academic researchers at the Oregon Health & Science University and funded by the National Cancer Institute and the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. (AP)

2. The FDA said that a class of diabetes drugs needs new warnings. The agency said that SGLT2 inhibitors, like Boehringer Ingelheim's Jardiance, AstraZeneca's Farxiga and Johnson & Johnson's Invokana, need warnings added to their labels about the risk of ketoacidosis—or too much acid in the blood—as well as the risk of serious urinary tract infections. (FDA)

3. The Senate Special Committee on Aging is scheduled to hold a hearing on Wednesday to discuss the dramatic price increases for some medications. The committee will investigate how drugmakers acquire old medications and ramp up prices after acquisition, eschewing innovation and R&D. Valeant, Turing Pharmaceuticals and Retrophin were all asked to provide documents about the rising costs of their medications. (WSJ)

4. An analysis conducted by researchers at King's College London found that patients had lower rates of satisfaction if their doctor prescribed fewer antibiotics. The research found that a 25% reduction in antibiotic prescribing was associated with 0.5% to 1% lower patient satisfaction scores.

5. The federal government received more than $96 million in settlements and judgments from the pharmaceutical industry in the 2015 fiscal year ending September 30. Thirty-nine million dollars came from allegations that Daiichi Sankyo paid kickbacks to physicians to sway them to prescribe specific drugs. (DOJ)

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