Advocacy - Tax and Fiscal

CLSA Letter to Conferee Rep. Nunes on Orphan Drug Tax Credit – December 2017

December 7, 2017

The Honorable Devin Nunes
U.S. House of Representatives
1013 Longworth House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515

Re: Preserve the Orphan Drug Tax Credit

Dear Representative Nunes,

On behalf of California Life Sciences Association (CLSA) – the premier statewide public policy, advocacy and business leadership organization representing California’s leading life science innovators, including medical device, diagnostic, biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies, research universities and private, non‐profit institutes, and venture capital firms – I write in strong support of the Orphan Drug Tax Credit (ODTC). As you and your fellow conferees work to align the House- and Senate-passed versions of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, I urge you to preserve this vital tax incentive that is so critical for encouraging research into life-saving treatments and cures for devastating rare diseases and disorders.

Since its enactment in 1983, the ODTC has been a tremendous success. The FDA had approved fewer than 40 orphan drugs prior to 1983; since then, 477 orphan drugs have been granted FDA approval, resulting in treatments for 648 different indications. By reducing the costs associated with developing drugs for small patient populations, the ODTC encourages companies to develop products that would otherwise not be commercially feasible.