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US: Alaska gets a $2 million pharmaceutical antitrust settlement

 |  February 5, 2017

The state of Alaska received $2 million in an antitrust settlement in which a pharmaceutical company was accused of monopolizing the rights to a lifesaving drug in order to maintain massive price hikes.

The $100 million settlement was filed Jan. 18 in US District Court for the District of Columbia. Alaska, Maryland, New York, Texas and Washington joined the Federal Trade Commission in the complaint against Mallinckrodt Ard, formerly known as Questcor Pharmaceuticals.

The settlement arose around antitrust allegations regarding a type of drug used to treat life-threatening maladies, including infantile spasms and nephritic syndrome.

In 2001, Questcor bought the rights to the drug Acthar for $100,000 and “modest royalties,” the complaint says. Acthar, derived from pigs’ pituitary glands, is an adrenocorticotropic hormone-based therapeutic drug.

At the time, the drug cost $40 per vial. Quesctor went on to raise the price to more than $34,000 per vial — an 85,000 percent increase, the complaint says.

Full Content: ADN

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