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Big pharma's rare disease adventure worries small biotech

This article was originally published in Scrip

Executive Summary

Pharma's recent interest into rare and orphan diseases has raised fears of price exploitation among smaller companies such as Trophos, which develops drugs for rare neurodegenerative disease. Speaking to Scrip last week at the BioPartnering Europe meeting in London, Dr Damian Marron, CEO of Trophos, expressed concerns that the recent deal muscle-flexing in rare diseases by firms such as Pfizer, GlaxoSmithKline and Sanofi-Aventis would "muddy the waters". He believes that, in order to recoup its outlays on deals and acquisitions in rare diseases, big pharma is likely to pursue a high-risk/high-margin strategy, charging high prices for treatments needed by patients often suffering from debilitating and severe diseases such as ALS.

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