Senator urges FTC to step up investigation into maker of addiction treatment

maker of addiction treatment

A US senator urged the Federal Trade Commission of the United States to speed up its antitrust investigation a drug manufacturer that sells Suboxone, a drug used to treat opiate addiction and narcotics.

The appeal filed by Senator Edward Markey (D-Mass.) Occurs less than a week after 35 states filed an antitrust lawsuit against Indivior, accusing the company of engaging in a scheme to block generic competition . Thus, the company “pushed up prices and private estates and low-cost consumers,” Markey wrote in his letter Tuesday to FTC chairwoman Edith Ramirez.

The moves are the latest in a long saga surrounding Suboxone.

The article continues after the announcement

The drug, which combines buprenorphine and naloxone, was first approved by the Administration Food and Drug Administration of the United States in 2002. At that time, Suboxone was sold by Reckitt Benckiser, which later its pharmaceutical business was spun off as Indivior. At that time, the company was granted exclusive rights for seven years to sell the pill in order to recoup their investment because the patient population is considered small.

However, as the exclusivity is coming to an end, the story took an interesting turn. Reckitt began selling a soluble film strip, the FDA really believed that poses a greater risk to children. And in 2012, Reckitt took his oldest market pill version, claiming that represented a danger to children, and then requested FDA to delay approval of generic versions.

These movements led the FDA to refer the matter to the Federal Trade Commission for investigation, a probe that has persisted since. In 2013, the FDA approved two generic versions of Suboxone pill more, but as noted Markey, no generic versions of lower cost of the filmstrip Suboxone, which Indivior developed with the help of MonoSol. The lawsuit filed by the state names this company as well.

In announcing last week that demand, the California Attorney General Kamala Harris also noted that Reckitt raised the price of its tablet while reducing the price of the latest version film. And the patent of the new version does not expire until 2023. This is a tactic pharmaceutical industry known as commutated, because patients and doctors are forced to consider a newer version higher price.

In his letter to the FTC, Markey also said the automaker has “significantly impeded the FTC investigation, trying to deny access to the FTC thousands of pages of documents that are essential to the investigation.” However, he also noted that the federal court overseeing the case later ordered the company to produce the documents.

so will the FTC stepping on the accelerator? We asked the FTC to comment and will be updated accordingly that although the agency usually limited to acknowledge receipt of a letter in such situations. Indivior also asked for comments and will pass along any response.

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