The FDA has just approved a first-of-its-kind drug that can target and treat over a dozen different kinds of cancers based on a common gene, rather than its location in the body.
Larotrectinib is an oral drug that received accelerated breakthrough status after it displayed remarkable success in treating adult and pediatric cancers that currently have no satisfactory alternative treatments or have progressed following treatment.
This is the second ever FDA-approved drug that treats cancers based on a certain genetic trait, regardless of the patient’s age or cancer type, and it is the first drug to ever treat cancers that contain the specific NTRK gene that is present in several common forms of adult cancer and many forms of rare pediatric cancers.
The drug is currently being marketed by Bayer under the brand name Vitrakvi. Though the wholesale acquisition cost of the drug is $32,800 for a 30-day supply, the company has taken several steps to ensure that every patient who needs the life-saving medication will have affordable access.
For starters, the company insists that because the bulk of insurance companies will be covering the costs, most patients will only have to pay about $20 or less out-of-pocket. If there are complications with the insurance coverage, Bayer will help with expensive co-pays or provide the medication to the patient for free while the details are worked out.
If all else fails, then the company will connect the patient with a Bayer-funded charity that provides the drug free of charge.
Source: Good News Network