Focus On The Core: Merck Claims R&D Restructuring Poised To Produce Results
At an R&D day presentation in Boston, Merck executives claimed R&D restructuring is beginning to bear fruit, presenting the pharma with a host of near-term launch possibilities. Outside of cancer immunotherapy, Merck has obtained or anticipates approvals in cardiovascular health, insomnia, diabetes, hepatitis C, osteoporosis, and allergies.
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Rolling BLA for MK-3475 accepted for priority review with a PDUFA date of Oct. 28. Merck is undertaking or plans trials testing the anti-PD-1 candidate in 10 types of cancer and is seeking response signals in another 20 tumor types.
The big pharma will establish a new oncology unit focused on bringing its anti-PD-1 immunotherapy MK-3475 to market as part of a massive R&D overhaul aimed at lowering costs while driving innovation. Merck isn’t one of the industry’s leading oncology players and may not have as much R&D expertise in the area as rivals, but it might not ultimately matter – as long as MK-3475 gets to market.
New report shows average out-of-pocket cost per prescription of $10.67 in 2019 was unchanged from 2018. But while the number of dispensed drugs barely increased, sales jumped more than 5%.