J&J, Remicade Antitrust Settlement Gets Green Light

Pension funds leading antitrust litigation against Johnson & Johnson (J&J)  unit Janssen Biotech won preliminary approval from a federal judge in Philadelphia for a $25 million settlement of allegations that the company schemed to delay generic versions of the anti-inflammatory drug Remicade.

Judge Karen S. Marston signed off tentatively Tuesday on the agreement, which would resolve class action claims brought in the US District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania on behalf of end payers like union and municipal health plans. She said the terms of the deal appeared fair and adequate.

Remicade is an immunosuppressant that is used to treat Crohn’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and a variety of other inflammatory diseases.  In its September 20, 2017 complaint, Pfizer alleged that J&J violated the Sherman Act and Clayton Act by entering into de facto exclusivity agreements with insurers and providers of Remicade that excluded competitors. 

These agreements allegedly conditioned the availability of discounts, rebates, and other price concessions for Remicade on promises to eliminate or drastically reduce dealings with infliximab biosimilars, including Pfizer’s infliximab biosimilar, Inflectra. 

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