Sunday, September 27, 2015

Okay, I just don't like or respect the guy

A few days ago I wrote about the drug whose cost was going from something reasonable $3.50 per pill to $750 because the new company owner wanted to. Due to pressure, they have now said they will reduce the price but didn't say when or by how much.

This same person has a history of filing frivolous lawsuits to interfere with FDA approvals and also hedging against the company stock. So he ends up making a bundle while slowing down drugs reaching the market. So this lovely gentleman has a history of doing this:

"Until this week, Shkreli was largely unknown beyond Wall Street and the pharmaceutical industry.He gained sudden notoriety for jacking up the price of Daraprim, a drug used to treat life-threatening infections, just two months after his company, Turing Pharmaceuticals, acquired the medicine.
Initially defiant in the face of an onslaught of criticism, the 32-year-old chief executive agreed on Tuesday to lower the price, although he has not indicated when or by how much."

But wait there's more!

"Shkreli employed a similar pricing strategy at Retrophin, another drug company he ran before its board of directors booted him from his executive position. Last month, Retrophin accused him in a lawsuit of using company funds to repay investors after his hedge fund became insolvent."

Isn't this illegal?

"Shkreli also has a track record of betting against pharmaceutical stocks — a practice known as short selling. And in at least two cases he pressed federal regulators to reject the companies’ product at the same time he was betting the stocks would go down."

I think I have a nasty name for him now.

"In 2010, while running his hedge fund, Shkreli wrote a letter to the FDA urging the agency to turn down an application from MannKind, a company he was shorting that was seeking approval for an inhaled insulin product, according to news accounts. The agency initially had multiple issues with the drug but eventually approved it last year."

And again:

"In 2011, Shkreli then turned his attention to Navidea and its cancer diagnostic, called Lymphoseek — this time going so far as to a file a “citizen’s petition,” a more formal kind of regulatory complaint. Shkreli has no formal medical or scientific training. But while shorting the firm’s stock, he argued there were problems with the design of clinical trials used to evaluate the radioactive agent.

He publicized his complaints and financial bets against Navidea, which caused the company’s stock value to drop by nearly half, to about $250 million, leaving the drug maker in turmoil.

By filing the petition, Shkreli “almost derailed the Lymphoseek program,” said Steve Brozak, who heads WBB Securities, which helped raise money for Navidea (which was known as Neoprobe at the time). “He created an illusion there was an issue [with the trials], but the only thing he did was make money by shorting the stock. Meanwhile, patients could have been penalized.”"

What a 'nice' guy. He is lining his pockets with complete disregard for the patients who might actually benefit from these medical developments. He is young (32), but I am not sure he will ever grow out of this, unless he ends up in jail.

It is people like this who contribute to the expenses of pharma companies who are trying to bring new life saving treatments to market.


Anonymous said...

The guy has no scruples. Karma would be him getting a cancer that requires a treatment that he worked hard to keep from the market. I wouldn't feel sorry for him at all if that happened.

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Dr. Michael A. Fiorillo

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