Vitamin D drug is world’s ‘most profitable’ brand

Marketing Week has discovered what appears to be the most expensive, and probably most profitable, consumer branded product in the world.

According to a Liverpool pharmacist, a prescription drug derived from vitamin D – found naturally in kippers and eggs – is probably the most world’s most expensive product.

The drug, called alfacalcidol, is produced by Danish company Leo Pharmaceuticals as One-Alpha. It is used to treat kidney disorders and some skin conditions. A pack of 100 Alpha-One capsules, each containing 250 nanogrammes, costs 11.78.

Liverpool pharmacist Kevin Shannon says that if the alfacalcidol was made in its pure form into a one-kilo bag, the equivalent to a bag of sugar, it would cost 471m. A spokesman for Leo Pharmaceuticals says that synthesising a kilo of alfacalcidol can cost up to 10m.

“The NHS is paying for probably the most expensive and profitable product in the world,” says Shannon.

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