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After a group of doctors raised a public fuss last month about a complicated change in pricing and dosing for a cancer medication, the manufacturers late last week suddenly scrapped plans to greatly increase the cost, according to a statement issued by one of the companies.

The about-face is an unusual instance in which a drug maker — in this case, two drug makers — rolled back plans to boost pricing in the face of notable criticism. Typically, pharmaceutical companies try to ride out bad publicity, but the outcry came just as the White House made a push to lower drug prices.


At issue is Imbruvica, which is used for treating different white blood cell cancers and costs about $133 for each 140 mg capsule. Daily dosing depends upon the cancer, but the annual cost is typically around $148,000. The medicine is sold by a partnership between units of AbbVie (ABBV) and Johnson & Johnson (JNJ).

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  • Very well, the price for the original 140 mg dosage shall remain the same. Any insight into the pricing for the new dosage forms – why do I think the 70 mg won’t be “half off?”

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