Five things for pharma marketers to know: Friday, April 28, 2017



1. Express Scripts' disclosure that Anthem plans to end its contract with the PBM may have exposed how profitable relationships with insurers and PBMs can be. Anthem accounted for 16% of prescriptions processed by Express Scripts last year but was responsible for 31% of its earnings. (Bloomberg)

2. Sarepta Therapeutics CEO Ed Kaye will step down but remain with the company as an advisor. At the same time, Sarepta said Jean-Paul Kress, a Sanofi executive and a Sarepta board member, would step down from his board role, due to a “possible of conflict interest associated with his future endeavors.” This created speculation that Paris-based drugmaker may acquire Sarepta. (TheStreet)

3. A National Health Service initiative, known as the Cancer Drugs Fund, meant to help the U.K. pay for expensive drugs was ineffective, according to an analysis in the Annals of Oncology. Only eighteen of the 47 treatments that the fund paid for prolonged patients' lives, and did so by an average of just three months. (The Guardian)

4. New GlaxoSmithKline CEO Emma Walmsley plans to make bigger bets in pharma R&D. In the company's earnings call, she noted she wanted “more focused priorities” and would look for more opportunities for drugs with the potential for scale. (MarketWatch)

5. The FDA approved Impax Laboratories' generic version of Merck's cholesterol-lowering drug Vytorin. Vytorin saw sales of more than $1 billion last year. (Reuters)