Tomorrow’s life-saving treatments depend on today’s investments

Scientists just discovered a potentially revoluntionary treatment for Parkinson’s disease. The experimental medicine, which is currently in clinical trials, boosts dopamine production in patients’ brain to reduce tremors and improve motor skills.

The drug is one of several “gene therapies” devoloped in recent years. These medications have the potential to treat — or even cure — the world’s deadliest diseases by repairing the genetic mutations that caused those ailments.

The one hiccup? Gene therapies come with a hefty price tag — at least for now.

These cutting-edge treatments are worth the cost. Their prices will ultimately fall once competing drugs are introduced and patents expire. One medicine to treat schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, for example, cost nearly $400 in 2010. Patients can obtain the generic version of that drug today for $17.

 

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