SWORD Data Sharpen Commercial Appetite For ViiV’s Juluca, But Is It Too Little Too Late?
ViiV Healthcare has published results from the first long-term Phase III study for switching from a three-drug combination, to an oral two-drug combination. It disproves resistance and safety fears that have hampered prescriber comfort, however, it may have to dampen its sales ambitions when ViiV’s soon-to-be-approved combo Tivicay/Epivir comes to market.
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The first approval in the US of a once-daily single-tablet, two-drug regimen for treatment-naive HIV from the HIV/AIDS therapy specialist, ViiV Healthcare, suggests a shift away from three-drug regimens for HIV/AIDS could be gathering pace.
The likely EMA approval of Juluca challenges the traditional HIV treatment paradigm of a three-drug regimen, with the single tablet, two-drug regimen offering the same efficacy as well as reduced toxicity and greater convenience.
Pricing of $31,000 annually for GSK/J&J's single-tablet, two-drug HIV regimen Juluca (dolutegravir/rilpivirine) is on par with marketed fixed-dose combinations that include integrase inhibitors.