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Author: JoelCairo Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 892  
Subject: Re: Does anyone know how the flu vaccine... Date: 10/15/2004 7:32 PM
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Thanks for the info, but let's examine one of your comments a little bit more:

The reason there are so view pharmas interested is that there is very little profit in influenza vaccine making and is hit / miss depending on years need...

I guess I don't remember the last year a vaccine was not needed, but putting that aside a second...

...R&D costs on flu vaccine are non-existent; the whole challenge is that of a committee under CDC (I think) which has to select which strain of the virus is most likely to become the dominant one, and to do so in time to manufacture the vaccine.

...Marketing costs are zero. Don't need TV ads, fancy packages, nice colored pills, big doctor promos, etc etc.

...Virtually no cost of sale, and certainly no cost of establishing a distribution network. These things are in place.

...Packaging R&D was done long ago. Its a repetitive thing.

...Manufacture of the vaccine: don't know how much that costs, but that's about it, that and packaging.

And for this, the cost is $7-10 a dose.

100-120 million doses.

Or $700 million to $1.2 billion in revenue per year. In the US alone.

If we add Europe, Canada, Australia and Japan, whose combined populations probably double the US, you could expect double the market.

Is it really so small, so unprofitable, to have a $1 billion plus drug year in year out, with no serious sign of diminishing?

Joel
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