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Life Sciences Investors Applaud Bipartisan Bill To Eliminate Small-Molecule Penalty

This bipartisan legislation would eliminate the small-molecule penalty by aligning the price-setting timeline for small and large molecule medicines.


WASHINGTON, D.C. (February 1) — Yesterday, Representatives Don Davis (D-NC), Brett Guthrie (R-KY), and Greg Murphy (R-NC) introduced H.R. 7174, the Ensuring Pathways to Innovative Cures (EPIC) Act, advancing the top legislative priority for Incubate and life sciences venture capital. This bipartisan legislation would eliminate the small-molecule penalty by aligning the price-setting timeline for small and large molecule medicines. Current law affords small-molecule drugs just 9 years of exemption, while large molecule biologics receive 13 years.


Incubate executive director John Stanford issued the following statement:


“Incubate commends Reps. Davis, Guthrie, and Murphy for forging a bipartisan path toward striking the small-molecule penalty from federal law. The EPIC Act would help to ensure that a drug’s potential, not the federal government, is the primary factor guiding research and development decisions.


“Since Congress passed the small-molecule penalty into law in 2022, biopharmaceutical investors have begun to prioritize the development of large molecule therapies over small molecules. For that reason, addressing this disparity has been our top priority.


“The EPIC Act would rectify this unintended consequence of Medicare’s price negotiation program, ensuring life sciences firms have incentives to invest in all potential therapies — regardless of their molecular weight.


“Incubate has led the charge to grant 13 years of pricing protection to both newly approved small molecules and biologics. We remain committed to educating policymakers on venture capital’s role in the drug development ecosystem and how best to improve patients’ access to life-saving medicines.”


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About Incubate Incubate is a 501(c)(4) organization of venture capital firms representing the patient, corporate, and investment communities. Our primary aim is to educate policymakers on the role of venture capital in bringing promising treatments to patients in need.

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