Italy seeks 1.2 bn euros in anti-trust damages from Roche, Novartis

May 28, 2014

Italy's health ministry is seeking 1.2 billion euros ($1.6 million) in compensation from Swiss pharma giants Novartis and Roche for the manipulation of sales of a cheap drug used to treat eye problems, Italian media reported Wednesday.

The ministry's move came after Italy's antitrust body fined the two firms 182.5 million euros over their "illicit deal to prevent the use of a very cheap drug, Avastin, in treating" sight problems.

The antitrust body said the two pharma giants had colluded with the aim of boosting the sales of a more expensive product, Lucentis. It also claimed that they steered health services and doctors away from Avastin by describing it as more dangerous.

Both Roche and Novartis market Lucentis as the best medicine for the eye disease known as .

Novartis has rejected the anti-competition accusations and has said it would appeal against the fine.

Explore further: Cheaper eye drug proves as good as pricier one

Related Stories

FDA panel unanimously backs Regeneron eye drug

June 17, 2011

(AP) -- A panel of federal health experts voted unanimously in favor of a new eye drug from Regeneron, bringing the company one step closer to competing against a blockbuster Roche drug that currently dominates the market.

Novartis tries to make UK hospitals use $1000 drug

April 24, 2012

(AP) -- Drug maker Novartis says it is taking legal action in Britain to make hospitals use an eye drug that costs 700 pounds ($1,130) per shot instead of a cheaper one that costs 60 pounds ($97).

FDA warns of another compounding pharmacy recall

March 20, 2013

(AP)—The Food and Drug Administration is warning doctors that a compounding pharmacy is recalling syringes of the Roche drug Avastin after receiving reports of eye infections among patients.

Japan prosecutors raid Novartis over drug ad scandal

February 19, 2014

Japanese prosecutors on Wednesday raided the offices of the local arm of Swiss pharmaceutical giant Novartis over alleged exaggerated advertising for a popular blood-pressure drug, local media said.

Recommended for you

Treatment options for opioid addiction are expanding

August 10, 2016

In the past two decades, the devastation associated with opioid addiction has escaped the relative confines of the inner city and extended to suburban and rural America. Due in large part to the proliferation of prescription ...

Can exercise be replaced with a pill?

October 2, 2015

Everyone knows that exercise improves health, and ongoing research continues to uncover increasingly detailed information on its benefits for metabolism, circulation, and improved functioning of organs such as the heart, ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.