[WSJ] If AbbVie Discounts its Hep C Drug, Would Pricing Reach a Tipping Point?

Can AbbVie make a dent in the burgeoning hepatitis C market?

Now that the FDA has approved the Harvoni treatment from Gilead Sciencesand a $94,500 price for a 12-week regimen has been established, attention is turning toward AbbVie and the steps the big drug maker must take to win market share. Already, though, some Wall Street prognosticators believe AbbVie may find it daunting.

For instance, in an investor note, Sanford Bernstein analyst Geoff Porges wrote that Gilead left AbbVie “less room to start a price war” than some may have expected. How so? Gilead priced the eight-week regimen at $63,000, which means average pricing for Harvoni would be about $80,000, assuming that as many as 45% of the patients with most common form of the virus use the drug for eight weeks.

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