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Economic Influence on the Development of New Pharmaceuticals


John Mohr, PharmD, president and founder of Medical Affairs Strategic Solutions, LLC, discusses the economic opportunities driving the development of new pharmaceuticals.
Interview Transcript (slightly modified for readability)
“Certainly the discovery of new antimicrobial targets is different; however, a majority of what’s happening in the industry is really being driven by economic reasons. For example, there’s [been] $360 billion of pharmaceuticals purchased in the US in 2014; [whereas] just in the hospital setting alone, where resistance is the greatest, there’s only $1.9 billion being spent.
When you compare the $360 billion overall with the $1.9 billion in the hospital setting, there is a clear shift towards therapies other than those antibiotics used in the hospital setting. If you look at the amount of money spent on any pharmaceutical, there was $6.5 billion spent in 2014 on a hepatitis C drug, but if you look at the two antibiotics for gram-negative infections that were approved, in the first 12 months [they] gathered $10 [million] to $20 million in annual sales.
Again, when you look at the amount of sales [for] an antibiotic in the inpatient [setting], versus a drug for hepatitis C, you can see a huge difference between the $6.5 billion opportunity and the $10 [million] to $20 million opportunity.”
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