Aytu BioScience Inc. (NASDAQ:AYTU) announced that Express Scripts Inc., which is among leading pharmacy benefit managers in the US, will make testosterone nasal gel, Natesto, a preferred product brand on its National Preferred Drug List.
Express Scripts upgrades Natesto to preferred brands
Josh Disbrow, the CEO of Aytu BioScience, indicated that Express Scripts’ upgraded formulary placement was a huge development for Natesto as this will enable more access to patients in the US. He added that the inclusion of the testosterone nasal gel to the Express Scripts’ National Preferred Drug List will enhance access of Nastesto to more than 13 million men in the US dealing with hypogonadism.
Currently, Express Scripts serves around 3,000 clients that cover close to 70 million lives. This includes around 9 million lives the Cigna Healthcare manages. Usually, when drugs are listed as preferred brands on the formulary, it shows that the pharmacy benefit manager has evaluated them from a value and therapeutic perspective. As a result, the preferred drugs are available to patients at a lower co-insurance to co-pay compared to non-preferred brands.
Aytu expects demand for Natesto to increase
Disbrow indicated that Natesto has continued to be a vital product for the company, and they believe the enhancing patient access will contribute significantly to the growth of Aytu going forward. He added that they expect the numbers of men requiring the therapy to increase in the coming months more so considering Acerus, who are colleagues of Aytu, are planning to launch their sales team in the US. As a result, this will work in helping complement the commercial team of Aytu and thus drive sales in the US.
In other development, the company recently acquired exclusive distribution rights in the US for two COVID-19 IgG/IgM rapid tests. The tests are string phase immunochromatographic assays employed in qualitative, rapid, and differential IgG and IgM antibodies detection to COVID-19 in serum, plasma, and whole blood. Also, the company recently signed an exclusive global licensing deal with Cedars-Sinai for the development of the Healight tech platform.