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Novartis’ Leqvio has potential to lead the cholesterol-lowering space due to its administration convenience, says GlobalData

Novartis’ Leqvio has potential to lead the cholesterol-lowering space due to its administration convenience, says GlobalData

Sales for Novartis’ Leqvio (inclisiran) for the treatment of high cholesterol may surpass those of Sanofi/Regeneron's Praluent (alirocumab) and Amgen's Repatha (evolocumab) by 2027 due to its administration convenience, according to GlobalData. The leading data and analytics company notes that Leqvio is in a better position compared to its competitors as it is administered by a healthcare professional twice per year, while Praluent and Repatha are injections that patients have to give themselves at home twice a month.

According to the analyst consensus forecasts from GlobalData’s Pharma Intelligence Center, Leqvio will reach $2.5 billion in sales by 2027, while Repatha and Praluent will reach $2.2 billion and $716 million, respectively.

Valentina Gburcik, PhD, Senior Director of Cardiovascular and Metabolic Diseases, Gender Health and Ophthalmology at GlobalData, comments: “All three cholesterol-lowering drugs target PCSK9, although Leqvio does it in a different manner, by degrading the mRNA molecules used to translate genetic instructions into proteins, while Repatha and Praluent are monoclonal antibodies that inhibit PCK9 activity. Each drug has been approved for people with heart disease who can’t control their cholesterol levels with statins and for patients with genetic disorders that lead to high levels of cholesterol.”

One barrier that Leqvio may face is the absence of a long safety record for the drug and the hefty price of around $6,500 per year—which is slightly higher than Repatha’s and Praluent’s current prices.

Gburcik continues: “Despite this barrier, Leqvio’s administration convenience puts the drug in a better position. Furthermore, Leqvio’s reimbursement will be routed through the medical benefit pathway, meaning the majority of patients would be eligible for Leqvio with no co-pays at launch.”

Novartis is awaiting the results from the ongoing cardiovascular outcomes ORION-4 study, which should show association of lower cholesterol levels with improved cardiovascular outcomes. The primary completion date of the study is estimated for July 2026.

Gburcik concludes: “The next few months will give a hint as to whether Novartis got the pricing right, given that it will still be unknown for a while whether the drug will improve cardiovascular outcomes for patients more drastically than Repatha and Praluent do. However, Novartis may gain a competitive edge in the cholesterol-lowering space due to its experience in the cardiovascular market and physicians’ familiarity with its heart failure drug Entresto.”

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Last Updated: 23-Mar-2022