Head Of The Class: A Star Stands Out Among 2014 Drug Launches
Gilead’s Sovaldi earned a spot in the record books – and the hearts of drug marketers – generating $8.55 billion in the first nine months of 2014. Despite controversy over Sovaldi’s high price, Gilead defended the drug’s value and executed flawlessly on the launch. Other 2014 drug launches were slow out of the gates, as the bar for new drugs continues to grow.
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Ocrevus generated roughly $935m in 2017 after launching in April, exceeding recent drug launches and putting the multiple sclerosis therapy in company with early successes like Opdivo, Ibrance, Tecfidera and Eylea.
The number of novel drugs approved by FDA in 2016 was down versus prior years, and many of the drugs that did launch are off to a slow start. The expectation is increasingly for drugs to build sales over time.
J&J’s push to expand the successful drug to earlier use and more labeled indications is under a shadow due to the risk for diabetic ketoacidosis, but it said the condition is very rare and endocrinologists caution against reading too much into case reports flagged by FDA.