Boston Scientific and BTG, In the Matter of

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Case Status:
In the Matter of Boston Scientific Corporation and BTG plc
FTC Matter/File Number:

191 0039

Docket Number:


Case Summary

Medical device company Boston Scientific Corp. has agreed to divest certain assets to Varian Medical Systems to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that Boston Scientific’s proposed $4.2 billion acquisition of medical equipment and pharmaceutical supplier BTG plc would violate federal antitrust law. According to the complaint, Boston Scientific’s acquisition of BTG would harm consumers in the U.S. market for drug eluting beads, or DEBs, which are microscopic beads used to treat certain liver cancers. Interventional radiologists use DEBs, combined with chemotherapy drugs, in a procedure called transarterial chemoembolization. This procedure blocks the flow of blood to a liver tumor, causing it to shrink over time, while simultaneously slowly releasing a chemotherapy agent that also attacks the tumor. Under the proposed settlement agreement, Boston Scientific is required to divest to Varian its DEB business, as well as its bland bead product line. Bland beads are used in another type of procedure to block the flow of blood to a liver tumor. According to the FTC, BSC’s bland bead business must be divested with its DEB business to ensure the divestiture’s effectiveness.