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Drug Company Ovation Monopolized Child Heart Drug Needed by 30,000, FTC Says

MINNEAPOLIS (CN) - Ovation Pharmaceuticals first secured a monopoly in a drug that treats a heart defect in premature babies, the FTC claims in Federal Court, and then jacked up the price of a vial of Indocin from $36 to nearly $500. More than 30,000 U.S. babies are born with the heart defect each year.

Ovation acquired rights to Indocin's only competitor, NeoProfen, in January 2006, the FTC says. Then it raised the price of Indocin by 1,300 percent, and charged a similar inflated price when it released NeoProfen in July 2006, according to the complaint. The FTC seeks damages for antitrust monopoly violations and unjust profits.

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