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What price restored eyesight? US firm says $850,000…

Monday 29 January 2018

One of the most expensive drugs ever sold has just been approved for sale in the US by the Federal Drug Administration (FDA). But this is no ordinary drug. Spark Therapeutics, who produce Luxturna, claim it can cure a rare form of blindness.

For $425,000 per eye, sufferers of blindness due to retinal dystrophy can purchase a one-off injection of the drug which was shown to restore sight in clinical trials. In fact the trial was so successful that the drug has become the first gene therapy of its type to be approved by the FDA. However, the injections carry no guarantee. Consequently, Spark are offering a range of discounts should the drug fail initially or over time.

There is potential good news for those living in the UK, as Luxturna has been submitted for approval by the European Medicines Agency (EMA). EMA approval would mean that the drug can be considered by the National Institute for Health Care Excellence (NICE) - the first step towards possible free availability on the NHS.

Sources:

  1. The Guardian:
    US drug firm offers cure for blindness - at $425,000 an eye.

  2. Bloomberg:
    A Breakthrough Blindness Treatment Will Cost $425,000 Per Eye, If It Works.

  3. FDA News:
    FDA approves novel gene therapy to treat patients with a rare form of inherited vision loss.

Labels:

Blindness, Gene Therapy, Luxturna, NICE, vision loss

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