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Rare-Disease Treatment From Alnylam to Cost $450,000 a Year

  • Drug is first of its kind; approved Friday by U.S. FDA
  • Biotechnology company shares fall 7.6 percent in late trading
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Alnylam Pharmaceuticals Inc. won approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for its first-of-a-kind treatment for a rare, often deadly nerve disease and plans to charge about $450,000 a year for the therapy.

Patients who have the condition, called hereditary transthyretin-mediated amyloidosis, or hATTR, will take the drug for the rest of their lives, racking up costs in the millions of dollars. After expected discounts in the U.S., Alnylam said it expects the net cost for the drug to be about $345,000 a year. It plans to offer money back if the drug doesn’t work.