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Is pharma in for a swarm of subpoenas? Are we running out of ideas in oncology? And can a drug possibly be worth $4 million a dose?

We discuss all that and more on the latest episode of “The Readout LOUD,” STAT’s biotech podcast. First, STAT’s Lev Facher joins us to recap the midterms, going over what the new Congress has in store for drug prices, victories for anti-pharma crusaders, and the end of former Celgene CEO Bob Hugin’s campaign for Senate. Then, on the eve of a major cancer conference, we’ll dig into how the seemingly bright future for combining immuno-oncology drugs has led to surprising disappointment. Finally, a new gene therapy from Novartis has showed dramatic effects on a rare and deadly disease. The company says it would be cost-effective with a $4 million price tag, and not everyone agrees.

For more on what we cover, here’s what the midterms meant for health care; here’s a recap of Bob Hugin’s Senate run; here’s what’s next for drug pricing crusaders; and here’s the news on Novartis’ gene therapy.


We’ll be back next Thursday evening — and every Thursday evening — so be sure to sign up on iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play, or wherever you get your podcasts.

And if you have any feedback for us — topics to cover, guests to invite, vocal tics to cease — you can email [email protected].


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