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Paxton: $2M settlement to Baylor College of Medicine for pediatric neurological research

By David Yates | May 24, 2017

AUSTIN – On May 24, Attorney General Ken Paxton announced that the Baylor College of Medicine will receive $2 million from a settlement reached by Texas with Questcor Pharmaceuticals.

Baylor College of Medicine will use the $2 million for funding related to innovative pediatric neurological research projects.

“Baylor College of Medicine has long been a leader in researching treatments for children with neurological problems,” said Paxton. “We are pleased that this lawsuit and settlement will allow Baylor to continue its critical research.”

In January, Texas, the Federal Trade Commission and four other state attorneys general resolved a lawsuit against Questcor alleging it monopolized the market for Acthar, the only adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH)-based therapeutic drug sold in the Un U.S., according to a press release

Acthar is used to treat several diseases, including infantile spasms, a disease in which infants suffer from epileptic seizures that can result in severe injury or death. Questcor blocked competition for Acthar by acquiring the U.S. rights for Synacthen Depot, the only other ACTH-based drug sold in the world. Questcor also increased the price of the drug by 85,000 percent, charging over $34,000 for a vial of the drug that used to cost $40 per vial.  

The research that demonstrated Acthar was an effective treatment for infantile spasms was conducted by a team lead by Richard Hrachovy at Baylor College of Medicine in the 1970s and 1980s.

In addition to paying disgorgement, Questcor must transfer Synacthen to a firm that will have the incentive to develop and market the drug in the U.S.

Texas was joined by the attorneys general of Alaska, Maryland, New York and Washington in entering into this settlement.

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Texas Office of the Attorney General