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Under mounting pressure over its pricing for a newly approved for a Duchenne muscular dystrophy drug, Marathon Pharmaceuticals made a surprise move on Thursday and agreed to sell the medicine to PTC Therapeutics, which has been battling US regulators over its own treatment for the disease.

The deal, which will give Marathon $140 million initially and additional milestone payments, comes just one month after Marathon won Food and Drug Administration approval to sell a decades-old steroid and slapped an $89,000 price tag on the drug. PTC, meanwhile, did not say what it will now charge.


The Marathon price quickly triggered a furor since many parents had been purchasing the medicine from online pharmacies in the UK and Canada for about $1,000 annually, or less than $2 a pill, but imports would have been precluded by the approval.

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