Contribute Try STAT+ Today

Rise and shine, everyone, another busy day is on the way. Even so, there is nothing like a pleasant morning to lift the spirits. A cool breeze and warm sun are enveloping the Pharmalot campus as we hunker down and sift through our ever-growing to-do list. A familiar exercise, yes? Well, time to get cracking. So please join us for a daily ritual — a few cups of stimulation — and do keep us in mind if you hear something fascinating. Meanwhile, here are your tidbits. Dig in and have a grand day. …

A closely watched Covid-19 vaccine invented by CureVac (CVAC) was just 47% effective in a large trial at its interim analysis, a disappointing result that may highlight the challenge posed by virus variants, The Washington Post writes. The results of the 40,000-person trial mark a setback for a promising vaccine based on messenger RNA technology, the same approach at the core of the Pfizer (PFE)-BioNTech (BNTX) and Moderna (MRNA) vaccines authorized late last year for use in the U.S. Europe has pre-ordered 225 million doses.

NextSource Biotechnology, which markets the Gleostine brain cancer drug, has pulled out of a federal discount program for Medicare patients, leaving some struggling to pay for a therapy that can cost as much as $1,000 per capsule, The Wall Street Journal reports. The decision to leave the program, rendering its drug ineligible for the Medicare Part D drug benefit, comes after the company raised the price of the drug exponentially since acquiring rights in 2013. Gleostine is off-patent but has no generic alternative.

U.S. prescription drug spending will jump at least 8% by the mid-2020s as the controversial Biogen (BIIB) Alzheimer’s disease drug hits the market, Modern Healthcare writes, citing a new analysis. The intravenous drug, marketed under the name Aduhelm, will comprise more than 1% of all national health spending by the mid-2020s, according to the report released Wednesday by the not-for-profit research group Altarum. It will grow non-retail drug spending — on medications administered in hospitals or clinics — by at least 25%.

The Open Society Foundations, one of the world’s largest backers of public health initiatives, is undergoing a “significant” reorganization that will affect grant decision-making, a shift that has created anxiety among advocacy groups that work on access to medicines, STAT says. The changes at the OSF, which was founded by billionaire philanthropist George Soros, are still being finalized, although grants will be handled by different OSF offices, according to a foundation spokesperson, who insisted “it is too early to tell” how advocacy groups will be affected.

Unlock this article by subscribing to STAT+ and enjoy your first 30 days free!


What is it?

STAT+ is STAT's premium subscription service for in-depth biotech, pharma, policy, and life science coverage and analysis. Our award-winning team covers news on Wall Street, policy developments in Washington, early science breakthroughs and clinical trial results, and health care disruption in Silicon Valley and beyond.

What's included?

  • Daily reporting and analysis
  • The most comprehensive industry coverage from a powerhouse team of reporters
  • Subscriber-only newsletters
  • Daily newsletters to brief you on the most important industry news of the day
  • STAT+ Conversations
  • Weekly opportunities to engage with our reporters and leading industry experts in live video conversations
  • Exclusive industry events
  • Premium access to subscriber-only networking events around the country
  • The best reporters in the industry
  • The most trusted and well-connected newsroom in the health care industry
  • And much more
  • Exclusive interviews with industry leaders, profiles, and premium tools, like our CRISPR Trackr.

Create a display name to comment

This name will appear with your comment