Five things for pharma marketers to know: Friday, October 28, 2016


1. An analyst described the launches of Amgen's Repatha and Sanofi's and Regeneron's Praluent, both cholesterol-lowering PCSK9 inhibitors, as “close to, if not the biggest, wastes of development and commercial investment in recent industry history.” (Stat)

2. AstraZeneca halted enrollment for two clinical trials testing its experimental therapy, durvalumab, in patients with head and neck cancer. The drugmaker said it observed bleeding in some patients. (WSJ)

3. Americans choosing health plans using the exchanges have fewer choices than they did in previous years, according to an analysis conducted by the Associated Press and Avalere Health. One-third of U.S. counties have only one insurer participating in the exchange. (AP)

4. The two drugs most frequently prescribed to children with migraines, amitriptyline and topiramate, are no more effective than a sugar pill. As a result, researchers stopped a clinical trial earlier than expected. (NYT)

5. The Pentagon's spending on Mylan's EpiPens rose to $57 million this year, compared to $9 million in 2008, due to changes in volume and prices. In addition, more people covered by Department of Defense or Veterans Affairs health plans chose to fill prescriptions at retail pharmacies, which usually charge higher prices than military clinics. (Reuters)