As reported below in Bloomberg article via Pharmalot blog, now that Provenge is approved, Dendreon does not have enough current manufacturing capacity to serve more than 2% of the expected patient demand. That's bad (even worse) news if you have advanced prostate cancer.
The situation is not expected to improve much until well into 2011 and maybe a bit further out than that. We may need to see if a Big Pharma player comes in to scoop up the Company and then is in the position to speed an investment in manufacturing.
In the meantime, the WSJ blog reports that treatment centers around the World are using techniques derived from transplant programs to prioritize patients who will receive the vaccine first. Some institutions, notably MD Anderson, are even considering a lottery system. Unfortunately, the ability to pay the expected $93,000 for a course of treatment may also be an important criterion on who gets the first treatments.
Posted by Bruce Lehr June 28th 2010.