Sanofi launches lawsuit against Mylan over “illegal business practices”

pharmafile | April 26, 2017 | News story | Research and Development, Sales and Marketing Auvi-Q, Mylan, Sanofi, epipen, lawsuit 

In a move that is sure to pile even more pressure onto Mylan after the company’s recent woes, Sanofi has launched an antitrust lawsuit against the US firm accusing it of engaging in anti-competitive practices.

Sanofi alleges that consumer access to its product Auvi-Q – its own epinephrine auto-injector featuring voice instruction – was blocked by Mylan through the offer of rebates to insurers on the condition that they would not reimburse the French firm’s product, preventing it from cutting into EpiPen’s market share. All of this was made all the more unacceptable considering Mylan’s monopoly on the market, Sanofi claimed.

Following a recall, Sanofi withdrew the device in 2015, and it is now marketed by Kaleo.

The French company stated: “At the time when Sanofi was marketing Auvi-Q, Mylan engaged in illegal business practices to block a new and innovative product from competing against their best-selling epinephrine auto-injector, harming customers who sought to switch to Auvi-Q and harming Sanofi.”

Sanofi also claimed that Mylan “ran up the price” of its EpiPen before the launch of Auvi-Q in January 2013, hiking the asking price from $219 in November 2012 to $461 by October 2015. Furthermore, It has been purported that Mylan intentionally misclassified its product in order to pay less in mandatory Medicaid rebates, allowing the company to “subsidise its deep conditional rebates to commercial third-party payers and states,” and solidify its market position.

Mylan has not commented on the allegations. After the infamous price-hiking scandal of 2016, the company has been knocked back into disrepute following a mass worldwide recall and lawsuit over defective batches of its EpiPen product.  

Matt Fellows

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