Costly Turing Pharmaceuticals drug faces competition from Imprimis

Costly Turing Pharmaceuticals drug faces competition from Imprimis

Last month, Turing Pharmaceuticals led to a nationwide outrage and government investigations after it hiked the price of Daraprim, a drug for treating AIDS and cancer, from $13.50 a capsule to $750. San Diego’s biomedical company Imprimis Pharmaceuticals has introduced a competitor to the medication for $1 a capsule this week.

Imprimis is looking forward to follow the same strategy to undercut the sale of other generic drugs sold at quite more than their manufacturing cost. Alike Daraprim, the medications will be used in niche markets that so far haven't faced much competition.

The brand-name formulation of the generic drug pyrimethamine is Daraprim. Martin Shkreli, Turing's chief executive, has gained bad name because his company purchased the rights to it and then hiked its price 5,000%.

Imprimis' version is the combination of pyrimethamine and another generic drug. With the help of this strategy, Imprimis will be able to work as a compounding pharmacy, which doesn't need the US Food and Drug Administration approval for its products.

Turing isn't the first company that has suddenly raised the cost of a generic drug, as Valeant Pharmaceuticals became famous for the practice, when it hiked the prices of 2 heart drugs, Nitropress and Isuprel, by a respective 212% and 525%, instantly after acquiring them.

According to Deutsche Bank, this year, Valeant has also increased the price of the San Diego-originated heartburn drug Zegerid by 550%.

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