The price at which imatinib has been offered for sale by Novartis around the world has caused me considerable discomfort. Pharmaceutical companies that have invested in the development of medicines should achieve a return on their investments. But this does not mean the abuse of these exclusive rights by excessive prices and seeking patents over minor changes to extend monopoly prices. This goes against the spirit of the patent system and is not justified given the vital investments made by the public sector over decades that make the discovery of these medicines possible.
Thursday, August 16, 2007
BLOGSCAN - Scientist Behind Gleevec Decries Its Price
On PharmaLot, this post summarizes an interview with Brian Druker, one of the scientists responsible for the development of imatinib (Gleevec, manufactured by Novartis). Druker noted that much of the science behind Gleevec was financed by government money, yet Novartis saw fit to charge an extremely high price for this potentially life prolonging drug. The key paragraph: