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Regeneron and Sanofi will cut the price of their cholesterol drug Praluent by 60 percent to $5,850 a year, matching an unprecedented move that rival Amgen made with its medicine Repatha, the drug makers said Monday.

The two cholesterol drugs are now becoming an experiment in drug pricing. Praluent and Repatha were once expected to generate more than $1 billion in annual sales each. In 2015, executives at CVS Health, the pharmacy benefit manager, warned that together the medicines, which are given as injections, could cost the U.S. health care system $150 billion.


Instead, both Praluent and Repatha have struggled as insurance companies and benefit managers have made it difficult for patients to get the drugs, which originally both had a list price of $14,000 per patient per year. A 2017 study in the journal Circulation claimed that even for patients with a genetic disorder that causes super-high cholesterol, insurers rejected the drugs 63 percent of the time.

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