The collaborating drug companies cut prices in an effort to make their drugs more accessible.
Drug companies Sanofi and Regeneron recently announced a reduced list price for their collaborated drug, alirocumab injections (Praluent), a therapy indicated for the treatment of high cholesterol in adults.
The company announced a 60% list price reduction for alirocumab, bringing the annual cost down to $5,850 annually for 75mg and 150mg doses. The new list price will take effect in early March, according to a press release from Sanofi.
Alirocumab injections are PCSK9 inhibitors, preventing the binding of proprotein convertase subilisin/kexin type 9 to LDL receptors. This increases the number of LDL receptors on the liver cells, allowing them to clear LDL, otherwise known as bad cholesterol, and reduce the LDL-C levels in the bloodstream, according to the statement.
The price lowering is expected to have a positive impact on out-of-pocket costs for patients, and represents the companies’ efforts to expand patient access to care. This decision follows a previous statement from Sanofi and Regeneron promising reduced net prices for US payers in exchange for their help in reducing access barriers for patients, according to the statement.
Medicare Part D patients are expected to see large savings—with monthly payments of just $25-$150 per month, they could save as much as $345 depending on their plan.
While the new price will be available to pharmacies in March, doses with the original price will remain on the market at least through the remainder of 2019. Despite the difference in cost, the drugs will be exactly the same, according to Sanofi and Regeneron.
"We were encouraged to see improvements in accessibility following our collaboration with payers last year to provide more straightforward, affordable access to Praluent, but only some patients had reduced out-of-pocket costs. With today's announcement, we are looking to help bridge that gap, and have now made Praluent available at a price that is approximately 60% lower," said Michelle Carnahan, North America Head of Primary Care Business Unit at Sanofi, in a prepared statement.
Sanofi and Regeneron offer Praluent® (alirocumab) at a new reduced U.S. list price [news release]. Bridgewater, New Jersey and Tarrytown, New York; February 11, 2019: Sanofi. https://prnmedia.prnewswire.com/news-releases/sanofi-and-regeneron-offer-praluent-alirocumab-at-a-new-reduced-us-list-price-300792876.html. Accessed February 11, 2019.