Pretomanid, developed by the non-profit TB Alliance, offers a new, safer and more effective treatment for tuberculosis. The non-profit is organized to improve access and affordability of life-saving treatments, but has currently only allowed one drug manufacturer to produce pretomanid. Doctors without Borders fears high prices will limit availability.
"In all of the lower-income countries, we will be encouraging other manufacturers, generic manufacturers, to get into the market — to get competition to drive down the price as well," he says.
But Lynch of Doctors Without Borders thinks there is a better way to keep these drugs affordable: baking a low-price requirement into the TB Alliance's licensing agreement with Mylan, which the organizations have not disclosed.
"What works even better than competition — which, by the way, will take a while — is you set the price reasonably low to begin with," she says.