The Federal Trade Commission has filed a lawsuit to prevent Amgen’s acquisition of Horizon Therapeutics, citing concerns about potential competition limitations in the pharmaceutical industry.
According to the FTC, the agreement would strengthen Amgen’s dominance over two of Horizon’s popular drugs: Tepezza for thyroid eye disease, and Krystexxa for gout treatment.
The agency stated that Amgen could provide rebates for their current drugs in an effort to encourage insurers and pharmacy benefit managers to prioritize the two Horizon products through cross-market bundling.
The Federal Trade Commission asserted that Amgen, a company based in California, has a record of using its drug portfolio to obtain benefits over potential competitors.
The FTC received a suit regarding the acquisition and pending merger between Indivior and Opian, which Senator Elizabeth Warren had previously requested the regulator to scrutinize due to concerns about potential price increases.
“Today’s action – the FTC’s first challenge to a pharmaceutical merger in recent memory – sends a clear signal to the market: The FTC won’t hesitate to challenge mergers that enable pharmaceutical conglomerates to entrench their monopolies at the expense of consumers and fair competition,” said Holly Vedova, agency’s bureau of competition director, in a statement.