FDA approves Shire's pricey Elaprase

Shire has received FDA approval for the first therapy designated for Hunter syndrome, a rare disorder that is linked to potentially fatal growth problems in children. Only about 500 people in the U.S. are afflicted by Hunter syndrome and about 100 of them have been involved in the clinical testing of Elaprase. Shire says it expects to market the drug for a cost of $300,000 a year, making it one of the most expensive medications on the market. Elaprase is an enzyme replacement therapy which injects a critically needed protein into the patient's bloodstream. These therapies are frequently targeted at tiny patient groups and are priced to bring in a significant amount of cash.

- read the article on Elaprase from The Boston Globe

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