Federal Trade Commission Chairman Joe Simons issued the following statement regarding the decision by the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania in the case FTC v. AbbVie. The court ruled that AbbVie used sham litigation to illegally maintain its monopoly over the testosterone replacement drug Androgel, and ordered $448 million in monetary relief to consumers who were overcharged for Androgel as a result of AbbVie’s conduct. This court order represents the largest monetary award ever in a litigated FTC antitrust case.
“This decision is a double victory, both for patients who rely on Androgel and for competition more broadly. It sends a clear signal that pharmaceutical companies can’t use baseless litigation to forestall competition from low-cost generics.”
The FTC filed a complaint in federal district court in 2014 charging that AbbVie Inc. and its partner Besins Healthcare Inc. illegally blocking American consumers’ access to lower-cost alternatives to Androgel by filing baseless patent infringement lawsuits against potential generic competitors.
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