Under Intense Criticism, Gilead Forsakes Monopoly Status for Its Experimental Covid-19 Drug

March 25, 2020

(STAT News) – In an unexpected move, Gilead Sciences (GILD) has asked the Food and Drug Administration to rescind orphan drug designation for an experimental medicine being tested to combat Covid-19. The request comes after intense criticism that it unfairly pursued a lucrative monopoly for remdesivir. The designation, which offers a drug maker seven years of marketing exclusivity, drew immediate condemnation from consumer advocates because orphan status is reserved for medicines targeting rare diseases that afflict 200,000 or fewer people.