Generic name: dupilumab
Companies: Sanofi and Regeneron
Disease: Atopic dermatitis
2022 sales estimate: $4.1 billion
Analysts are expecting big things for Sanofi and Regeneron’s dupilumab, to be sold as Dupixent. But that doesn’t mean the launch will be a cakewalk.
Sure, the candidate has racked up a wealth of positive data, and thanks to a dearth of solid atopic dermatitis treatment options, some analysts—such as Leerink Partners’ Geoffrey Porges—have predicted the med could be “life transforming” for many patients.
But when it comes time for Dupixent’s rollout, all eyes will be on the drug’s price tag—and how payers respond to it. After all, as Sanofi and Regeneron well know, payer obstacles have stalled recent launches of other specialty therapeutics approved for chronic uses. PCSK9 therapy Praluent, anyone?
As the companies have pointed out, though, they estimate only 1.6 million patients will qualify for Dupixent treatment under the indication U.S. regulators are currently reviewing, and that’s just a small piece of the much larger eczema pie. That factor could help smooth things over during payer negotiations, they suggested.
Meanwhile, the partners are also eyeing indications in a variety of other allergy-related disorders, including asthma. As Sanofi CEO Olivier Brandicourt put it during a presentation at the J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference in January, “Dupixent can be a pipeline, frankly, in itself.”