Merck & Co. has launched its cancer immunotherapy Keytruda in India. The drug amassed USD 1.4 billion in global revenue last year. The Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) cleared the therapy last year or use in patients with unresectable or metastatic melanoma.According to industry insiders, Keytruda is expected to carry a price of Rs. 3.75 lakh to Rs. 4.5 lakh in India, reflecting a 30-percent discount to its costs in other markets.
"The results of key trials [with Keytruda] are so robust and encouraging," remarked Sachin Almel, consultant medical oncologist at Hinduja Hospital and Medical Research Center, who predicted that Merck will soon request approval of the drug for the treatment of non-small-cell lung cancer.Meanwhile, some doctors warned that the drug could be too expensive for most patients. – Money Control