Monday, May 8, 2023

Company Founded to Lower Drug Prices, Abandons the Idea

EQRx, founded with much fanfare to create new drugs that were nonethless economically priced, gives up the idea.  Read the open access story in ENDPOINTS NEWS (email registration might be required.)

In brief summary, EQRx, a start-up that aimed to provide lower-cost treatments and disrupt the US drug price system, has dropped its original mission and laid off more than half of its staff. The company has slashed its pipeline down to one drug, lerociclib, a cancer drug (CDK4/6 inhibitor).  The strategy was still off balance from a February 2022 FDA decision to reject a Lilly drug publicly on the principle its clinical testing had been in China only.  But lerociclib devellopment will ride on EQRx's ongoing billion-dollar cash position.

Writes Max Gelman, EQRx’s plan to upend the US drug price system with lower-cost treatments is over.   "We tried to change the system; maybe that was a stretch,” founder and EQRx executive chair Alexis Borisy told Gelman.

The topic was also covered at Genomeweb here.  See a discussion at "In the Pipeline" at Science here.