Let’s come back to Letermovir. It has also obtained the status of Orphan Drug in the European Union (EU). That status is reserved for drugs used to treat rare disease that affects a minority of the population. The drug company is given tax breaks and marketing exclusivity for 7 years in the US and 10 years in EU. This is an incentive that was created by the governments to incite drug companies to develop medicine against rare disease. CMV is known to affect less than 200,000 people in the US, most of them being organ transplant patients.
Valcyte has been on the market for 10 years and Letermovir seems to be the most serious alternative to date. With clinical trials underway we should know soon if this drug has a bright future in helping organ transplant recipients.