Natalizumab will have one owner; good or bad news?

NEWS RELEASE: Biogen-Idec will terminate its collaboration with Elan, the Dublin-based drug maker that developed Natalizumab, and buy Elan’s remaining 50% interest. Going forward, Biogen-Idec will control all marketing and distribution rights. In exchange, Biogen-Idec will make a $3.25 billion cash payment to Elan and will make future contingent payments to Elan equal to 12% of Natalizumab’s global sales for the first year. After that, Biogen-Idec will make contingent payments of 18% on annual sales of Natalizumab up to $2 billion and 25% on annual sales that exceed $2 billion.

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“MS is clearly a lucrative field to be in as a pharma company. No wonder there is so much activity in the field.”

“Are you surprised how well Natalizumab is doing despite the PML scare?”

24 thoughts on “Natalizumab will have one owner; good or bad news?”

  1. Surprised? Of course not, Doc. When one drug dealer takes over another dealer's patch, compromises have to be made or heads may roll. Gangland politics, it's called.MS is a lucrative business, for sure. They are getting away with murder. Say no to drugs, kids. They mess you up.

    1. Really, MouseDoctor Part II? Remember when much of the developing world, and Africa in particular, was callously excluded from the anti-retroviral breakthrough of the mid-1990s, when AIDS was suddenly no longer an automatic death sentence? Africa, a continent that by 2000 had more than two-thirds of the world’s cases of HIV infection, was denied essential medication as a result of prohibitive pricing of branded drugs and the trade restrictions that kept cheaper generic alternatives out of reach implemented by the pharmaceutical companies. Heck, even a tyrant like George W. Bush, in his 2003 State of the Union address, said that out of 30 million Africans with HIV, only 50,000 were receiving treatment because of pharmaceutical tycoons conspiring to allow ten million sufferers to simply die just so they could maximise their profits. What’s even more mind-blowing is the evidence of how little lifesaving AIDS drugs actually cost to produce, yet Pharma screws ill people in order to facilitate its greed. The same principal applies to drugs manufactured to treat MS, where obvious chicanery is taking place to price-out needy sufferers.It all boils down to blatant manipulation by the pharmaceutical giants. The most profitable industry on the planet strictly interprets the word "patent" to mean "monopoly." These companies are naturally focused on the bottom line of profit and shareholder satisfaction. Only a laughable percentage of pharmaceutical revenues is funnelled back into medical research, which remains primarily government-funded. World Health Organization, UNAIDS and by U.S. and European governments is in the stranglehold of the pharmaceutical lobby. That's the truth.The pharmaceutical industry that you and your friends that run this blog defend to the hilt is holding the world hostage. Therefore, don't tell me to change the record until you educate yourself as to how amoral the corporations you defer to actually are.

    2. "Any chance of changing the record Dre? This raps getting a bit stale."Hilarious – very witty 🙂

    3. Oh really, Tony Fonda, you find that trite remark made by the good doctor to be funny? There's no accounting for taste, I guess.I can see by your avatar image that you too like torturing defenceless rodents. It has all the markings of an incipient serial killer. Enjoy your career trajectory, my friend.

    4. Dr Dre you seem to approve of anti-retrovirals for HIV.Don't you think AIDS patients should resign themselves to their fate?

    5. Spare me the pop psychology Dr Dre. As for defending Pharma to the hilt, you obviously have a few memory problems. There are numerous posts criticising Pharma behaviour. In fact Prof G criticised the decision by Genzyme to remove Alemtuzumab from patients who have received it on trials as they seek approval/rebranding for it from the FDA for MS. This criticism was on the blog and in an article in the BMJ. As a result Genzyme have reversed their decision.We have also criticised the spoiling tactics of Teva. there are other examples too.I love my job and meeting MS patients and when I retire the field of MS will be in a much better place than it was when I started.I feel good about that and I can easily justify the methods i use to help things along.

  2. Out of curiosity – where does this leave Elan? Do they have any other MS molecule undergoing trials right now?They seem to be focusing on Alzheimer instead…

    1. That was their sole interest in MS as far as I know. I'm sure their shareholders are delighted though!

    2. quite the opposite – just dumped all my stock in Elan after hearing out management earlier this afternoon talk about their financials.they have nothing valuable in the pipeline and are pressured to spend their cash pile on crappy acquisitions….A big loss for MSers above all that a strategic player of this side is not doing more in our space.

  3. Are you surprised how well Natalizumab…"What about results that matter? Any post-marketing statistics on efficacy, discontinuation rate, switching to other drugs?

    1. results are actually better than expected on all levels – that's why Biogen is the big winner in this equation….

    2. since you are asking kindly – make yourself some popcorn and listen to this – a lot of relevant data is there (enough to tell you where tysabri stands today at least)

    3. The link is under "Financial News & Events". I am really scared of brain atrophy resulting from watching this video. Anyway, i was asking about MS related outcomes, not financial success stories.

  4. Tysabri is just so helpful for most people, I'm not in the least surprised it is doing well despite PML.

    1. Indeed. Many MSers I've spoken to who are on Tysabri with no complication tell me that one of the greatest benefits apart has been that their fatigue, which was a big problem has disappeared.

  5. There are so many teens and young adults on Tysabri, when nothing else stopped relapses. Tysabri has given them a something close to a "normal" life. As a parent, when you see your child's hospital stays come to an end, missed school days a thing of the past…when you see your child dating, driving, working, living his/her life…you slowly push PML to the very back of your mind.

    1. Me to! Since being on Tysabri I feel normal; I wouldn't stop it for the world. I may be JCV positive, but who knows I may be gunned down tomorrow or I may get PML. The PML risk is just that, a risk. Why should I take a risk of untreated MS?

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