Nov 6, 2018 - Health

The potential $4 million drug

Doctors look at a child who has spinal muscular atrophy.

Doctors look at a patient with spinal muscular atrophy. Photo: Lola Bou/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Novartis bought biotech company AveXis for $8.7 billion earlier this year, and executives are thinking about charging at least $4 million for AveXis' highly touted gene therapy to treat spinal muscular atrophy, according to Endpoints News.

Why it matters: This would be the most expensive drug in the world, by far, if it gets FDA approval, and it would raise drug pricing concerns to a new level. As Walid Gellad, a medical professor at the University of Pittsburgh who studies pharmaceuticals, mused today: "The fact that we can spread a price across thousands or millions of people does not justify a given price."

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