Penny-pinching pembro.

June 16, 2017. Looking for ways to curb ballooning health care costs? This thought-provoking analysis indicates that a simple change on the directions label for pembrolizumab could save the U.S. close to one billion dollars annually. Yes, with a “b.” Studies have shown weight-based dosing with 2 mg/kg result in similar efficacy to dosing as high as 10 mg/kg. Prescriptions utilizing the lower end of such weight-based dosing as opposed to the standard fixed-dose method of 200 mg (i.e., the equivalent weight-based dose received by a 100 kg patient) could not only improve the therapeutic ratio but also cut annual costs of the blockbuster drug from 3.4 to 2.6 billion dollars. Now those are the kinds of numbers that can encourage some simple math.

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