Glenmark cuts kidney cancer drug cost by 96%

India-based pharmaceuticals maker Glenmark Pharma has launched a generic version of a popular kidney cancer drug priced 96% lower than the branded version in India.

Pfizer is the innovator of Sunitinib.

Glenmark said its drug is launched at a price that is approximately 96% lower than the MRP of the innovator brand. Glenmark’s prices are Rs. 7000 (50 mg), Rs. 3600 (25 mg) and Rs. 1840 (12.5 mg) per month.

Sunitinib is also approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (US FDA) and is recognized as one of the “gold-standard” of care in cases of fast-spreading (metastatic) renal cancer.

The drug is also approved for patients with certain type of Pancreatic Neuroendocrine Tumours.

A generic version of an innovator drug refers to a copy of the drug made by another company when the relevant patents lapse.

Kidney cancer (renal cell carcinoma) is a disease of uncontrolled cell growth in the lining of small tubes in the kidney.

“In the past decade, advances in research and drug development have begun to shift the paradigm of this disease. Sunitinib is an oral multi-kinase inhibitor (MKI), works by blocking several enzymes that promote cell growth. It is useful for the treatment of certain patients with gastrointestinal stromal tumors and advanced renal cell carcinoma,” the Mumbai-based company said.

According to a Globocan 2020 report , there are close to 40,000 patients with renal cancer in India.

According to Glenmark, research has shown that Sunitinib alone helped reduce the risk of progression of renal cancer by 58%.

Alok Malik, Group Vice President & Business Head, India Formulations, said the company recognized that patients suffering from advanced cancer in India are faced with limited treatment options.

“Glenmark is committed to bringing targeted and effective medicines at an affordable cost to physicians and their patients,” he said.