Turing Backpedals on Daraprim Price Hike
Amid public uproar over its steep price increase for pyrimethamine (Daraprim), Turing Pharma announced last night that it would lower the drug's cost.
Amid public uproar over its steep price increase for pyrimethamine (Daraprim), Turing Pharma announced last night that it would lower the drug’s cost.
However, the company has not yet disclosed the updated price.
“We’ve agreed to lower the price on Daraprim to a point that is more affordable and is able to allow the company to make a profit, but a very small profit,” Turing CEO Martin Shkreli told ABC News. “We think these changes will be welcomed.”
In August, Turing purchased the rights to Daraprim, the decades-old standard of care drug for life-threatening toxoplasmosis that is also a co-treatment for HIV and malaria.
Following this acquisition, the price per tablet of Daraprim promptly leaped overnight from $13.50 to $750—a 5000% increase.
Turing justified this initial price hike by claiming that some of the profits could be used to research and develop new treatments.
“For toxoplasmosis and other critical, under-treated diseases, the status quo is not an option,” the company stated. “Turing hopes to change that by targeting investments that both improve on the current formulation and seek to develop new therapeutics with better clinical profiles that we hope will eradicate the disease.”
But patient advocates, national media outlets, and even presidential hopefuls launched a vicious attack against Turing—prompting the company to change course on the drug’s price.
In a related event, Rodelis Therapeutics rescinded its past price increase for cycloserine and gave the tuberculosis drug back to its previous owner, the nonprofit Chao Center affiliated with Purdue University.
Cycloserine will now cost $1050 for 30 capsules, which is double its original price, but a fraction of Rodelis’ initial price hike above $10,000 for the same amount of capsules.