Several commentators have recently mentioned all the new drugs with odd syllables and letter combinations -- often centering on the use of X's and Z's. This is supposedly due to these types of names being "memorable" for prescribing MDs and to the public -- and due to regulatory requirements that names not be "confusing" with those of other drugs.
Although this might sound sensible -- I think on closer inspection it may not be when you consider how some of these names can be confused with other similar more popular names. Zelboraf for instance, may be a drug, but is also a prison in Afghanistan. Xalkori? Best known as being the consort of Xena, Warrior Princess. Jakafi is of course a new blend at Starbucks, while Xeljanz is a popular flavor of Gelato.
Posted by Bruce Lehr Jan 28th 2013