Was PTC Therapeutics playing games when it tried to defuse the deflazacort controversy with a $35,000 annual price? | ENDPOINTS NEWS

When PTC Therapeutics $PTCT CEO Stuart Peltz rolled out the biotech’s Q1 report this morning, he noted that company execs came up with what they believe is a “sustainable” price for the cheap, old steroid acquired from the controversial crew at Marathon Pharmaceuticals for $140 million up front and targeted at the Duchenne community in the US.

The net price, he said, would average $35,000 a year for a patient that weighed 25 kilograms, or 55 pounds.

“We believe this represents sustainable pricing which balances providing access to all eligible patients in the US in an ultra orphan population while maintaining sufficient infrastructure and programs, including continued investment in Duchenne,” Peltz said.

That $35,000 net — the price payers could expect after discounts — sounded like quite a drop from the $89,000 annual price point that triggered a storm of protest for Marathon, until you start to do the math on what these patients actually weigh.

RBC’s Matthew Eckler did the math, and came up with a much higher number. If you consider that most of the boys are in the 35- to 40-kilo range, he says, you’re really talking about an average range more like $45,000 to $50,000 a year.

That’s 45 to 50 times more than the $1,000 average price Duchenne parents have been paying to bring in deflazacort, a generic outside the US which has been available for decades at a low price. But now that it’s approved and available in the US, those foreign suppliers are being closed to American families. And PTC’s “net” price may actually wind up higher than the $54,000 price Marathon fielded, but failed to sell.

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Was PTC Therapeutics playing games when it tried to defuse the deflazacort controversy with a $35,000 annual price? – ENDPOINTS NEWS.