Gilead to release HIV-prevention drug patent a year early to Teva

A generic version of Gilead Sciences' HIV prevention drug, Truvada, will be available one year earlier than expected due to an agreement struck with Teva Pharmaceuticals a few years ago, the drugmaker announced May 8, according to CNBC.

In 2014, Gilead agreed to let Teva launch an early generic version of Truvada. Teva can launch its generic in September 2020.

In the U.S., Truvada costs $1,600 to $2,000 for a month's supply.

Activists have pressured Gilead to make the drug more widely available by breaking its patent or lowering the cost to help curb the HIV epidemic. They hailed the news of an early generic version, calling it "a victory for the LGBTQ+ community, for HIV activists and for U.S. taxpayers," according to CNBC.

Others aren't so sure that the deal will do much to benefit the public.

Aaron Lord, MD, of HIV activist organization PrEP4All Collaboration, told CNBC that allowing just one generic manufacturer to make a generic version of Truvada  "will do little to reduce the price in a way that will increase access, and PrEP4All remains suspicious of the terms and lack of transparency surrounding the Teva settlement."

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