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MONTEGO BAY, Jamaica — The drug manufacturer MannKind has been burning through millions of dollars each month. It only has 3,000 patients taking its sole product, an inhalable form of insulin. It recently said it doesn’t have enough cash to get to the end of this year.

So why, then, is the company sponsoring a reality TV show filmed here in this tropical resort town?


“We don’t have a ton of cash. As a small company who’s building, you gotta think differently and you gotta be more creative,” said Michael Castagna, who was promoted last week to CEO of MannKind. He won’t give specific numbers but said he’s spending less than the annual cost of keeping a typical employee on staff to sponsor the TV show. It’s a lot less, he said, than other companies spend to snag air time on, say, Monday Night Football or the evening news. And he’s hoping to target a very specific audience: people with diabetes — who are, after all, likely to be in the market for insulin.

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  • Tropical resort? Contract signing? So much happy horse sh*t. These T2s have already violated their own contracts with their bodies by allowing themselves to tip the scales north of BMI 35 fron a lifetime of gluttony. As a diabetic my insurance covers 10 HOURS of diabetes education. But it is delivered in a sterile classroom, drinking complimentary bottles of zero calorie water instead of watching TV from a tropical island while getting in the mood by secretly sipping pina coladas loaded with sugar. These “contracts” are a gimmick, like the ones the junkies sign with their pain med doc aka dope dealer with a medical license.

  • Absolutely disgusting reporting aimed at minimizing what this company has been able to accomplish and the patients that have come to depend on this truly innovative diabetes medicine. Why spend time on ONLY the negative and not even mention how patients are reporting life best A1C numbers while significantly improving their daily lives through inhaled insulin. Very pathetic, Rebecca.

  • Very well said, i wish them well also. This wanna be reporter seems to have it out for the show and the product. I found this very sad, so many people benefit from Afrezza and if they want to sponsor something to help get the word out so what, big pharma spend billions to market and this small company is trying to compete, whats wrong with that.

  • Inhalable insulin, even if no better medically than injected, would be a TREMENDOUS benefit to many people (and would get some people to be compliant who would NOT be otherwise) . Wishing them well . . . it would be a shame to see something so beneficial die on the vine …

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