Pfizer Inc. Chief Executive Jeffrey Kindler's decision to scrap an unpopular drug bucked an unspoken industry rule, according to a Wall Street Journal article ("Pfizer Breaks With Norm by Scrapping Drug"). Namely, products can linger on life support as long as they pose no safety problems.
This reminds me of the story of Mike the Headless Chicken (read it here). Mike the Headless Chicken (April 1945 – March 1947; pictured above) was a Wyandotte rooster (cockerel) that lived for 18 months after its head had been cut off.
There's a parable here:
- Exubera could have been Pfizer's headless chicken and lived for 18 months if Kindler didn't kill it; or
- Pfizer is now a headless chicken until it finds another blockbuster drug.