Just last month, the internet melted down in anguish at the news that Turing Pharmaceuticals had decided to raise the price of AIDS and cancer-related drug Daraprim from the more sensible $13.50 per tablet to $750 per tablet, jacking it up by the astronomical rate of 5,500%. This price jump came despite the fact that the drug costs only $1 to produce.
At the center of this ordeal is smug-faced CEO Martin Shkreli, who justified the outrageous price increase by saying that the profits would be plowed back to research. Faced with public outrage, he has stated that he will lower the price of the drug -- a promise that has yet to bear fruit.
Thankfully, a rival drug company has manufactured a much cheaper alternative to Daraprim, and it will be selling 100 tablets for $99, which amounts to $0.99 per tablet.
The company, Imprimis Pharmaceuticals, made the announcement for the drug on October 23. “While we respect Turing's right to charge patients and insurance companies whatever it believes is appropriate, there may be more cost-effective compounded options for medications, such as Daraprim,” said Imprimis CEO, Mark L. Baum.
A word of caution: Imprimis' alternative is not exactly similar to Daraprim, but it does come close. They both share the same active ingredient, pyrimethamine, which has been in use since 1953 for the treatment of parasitic diseases.