Price for Mustargen Rises Sharply With New Manufacturer

News broke today after the New York Times and other papers published a story on the sharp rise in cost for the drug Mustargen (Nitrogen Mustard). The drug was developed over 60 years ago and has been a mainstay for lymphoma treatment for most of that time. It is a primary drug used to treat cutaneous (skin) T-cell lymphoma and Hodgkin's Lymphoma as part of the MOPP regimen used if ABVD chemotherapy cannot (or has failed).

The drug company Merck recently sold the rights to make and market Mustargen to Ovation Pharmaceuticals. Ovation has now raised the cost of the drug over 650%!

For those without insurance or others whose doctors use it for treatment not covered by insurance, the price increase will be nearly prohibitive.

The Times quotes Sean Nolan, vice president of commercial development for Ovation, as saying that the price increases were needed to invest in manufacturing facilities for the drugs. He said the company was petitioning insurers to obtain coverage for patients

But Merck is still making the drug for Ovation. There appears to be more to this. It is a disturbing trend in the small drug sector and lymphoma patients are taking the brunt of it.

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