Friday, October 26, 2007

Drug Maker to Block Sale of Low Cost Cancer Drug

The good and bad of money…money…. money!

Pharmaceutical giant Genetech makes Avastin, a cancer drug that is also used to treat macular degeneration, which causes blindness in the elderly. Genetech also makes Lucentis, a drug used to treat macular degeneration. And, that’s good!

But, here’s the problem: Retinal specialists prefer to use Avastin because of its cheaper, about $50 a dose, while Lucentis costs about $2000 a dose. And, that’s good!

If it keeps making Avastin, Genetech will lose $1950 per dose. So, Genetech has told retinal specialists that it not going to produce Avastin, because Lucentis is “really-really-no-joke-pinky-swear” better than Avastin. And, that’s bad!

Elderly folks can’t afford a drug that cost $2000 a dose to prevent blindness, so they’ll go blind. And, that’s bad!

Andrew Pollack, The New York Times 10/12/2007 Read Article: The New York Times

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