The pharma industry is one of the most influential and biggest industries in the world. While not really surprising, because of or dependency on medicine and doctors alike, it is also because of the monopoly the pharma companies have on their drugs. They price it whatever they want to and the result is that they have really deep pockets.
Most medicine that you get everyday for headache or a cold are cheap. This is because they are open sourced for other companies to reverse engineer and produce it for the masses. Some drugs however, are patented by pharma companies and cost you a ton to buy. This may be for two reasons, wither the drug is costly just to buy or you need to take the treatment for a long period, which ruins you financially.
Gene Therapy by Novartis
The costliest drug in the world, was recently crowned after the FDA approved it a couple of weeks ago. It is a gene therapy treatment pioneered by Novartis, a leading drug manufacturer and pharma company in the world. The treatment costs around $2.1 million per patient, yes you read it right, $2.1 million. This made it the costliest drug in the world.
Previously, before Novartis took the throne, the costliest drug available drug was Ravicti. Synthesised by Horizon, another biggie in the pharma industry, it was used to treat and prevent a build-up of toxic ammonia in the blood in people with urea cycle disorder. It is an oral liquid and the treatment cost around $800,000 a year for a single patient.
Brineura is a drug that is used to treat infantile neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis type 2 (CLN2) disease, a form of Batten disease. A rare form of disease that affects the nervous system, it puts most patients in the wheelchair right in their childhood. Brineura is a drug that is manufactured by BioMarin Pharmaceutical and costs around $700,000 a year for a single patient.
Carbaglu is one of those drugs that is used to treat some of the rarest of the rare disease where you are missing an enzyme itself. Used to treat and prevent build-up of dangerous ammonia (hyperammonemia) in the blood due to the lack of a needed liver enzyme, it is an orally administered drug that costs from a minimum of $420,000 to nearly $800,000 per patient in a year.