Alkermes & Vivitrol Drug – Subject of Class Action Lawsuit
A class action lawsuit has been filed against Alkermes plc (NASDAQ: ALKS) and certain of its officers, on behalf of shareholders who purchased Alkermes securities between February 24, 2015, and November 3, 2017, seeking to recover damages against Defendants for alleged violations of the federal securities laws under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.
Alkermes is a “fully integrated global biopharmaceutical company” which is “focused on drug development for central nervous system (CNS) diseases” and whose “aim is to develop new medicines that make significant advances for chronic CNS conditions that affect millions of patients, such as schizophrenia, major depressive disorder and multiple sclerosis.” Alkermes’ marketed products include Vivitrol, a drug used as a treatment for alcohol and opioid dependence.
The class-action complaint alleges that throughout the February 24, 2015-November 3, 2017 Class Period, Defendants made materially false and misleading statements and/or failed to disclose that: (1) Alkermes systemically engaged in deceptive marketing campaigns to influence policymakers to use Vivitrol in addiction treatment programs over more scientifically proven and efficacious alternatives; (2) the foregoing conduct, when disclosed, would foreseeably subject Alkermes to heightened regulatory and legislative scrutiny; (3) accordingly, Alkermes’ revenues derived from Vivitrol were unsustainable; and (4) as a result of the foregoing, Alkermes shares traded at artificially inflated prices.
On June 11, 2017, The New York Times published an article, “Seizing On Opioid Crisis, a Drug Maker Lobbies Hard for its Product.” The article described Alkermes’ aggressive efforts to market Vivitrol while denigrating the efficacy of other addiction treatments.
According to The New York Times article:
Alkermes executives say they welcome any addiction treatment. But in pitches to investors, doctors, law enforcement officials and legislators, they have presented Vivitrol as something of a miracle drug, a cleaner alternative to Suboxone, the most common formulation of buprenorphine. They described Suboxone as an addictive “black market” or “street” drug, emphasizing that it is smuggled into prisons.
That view has resonated with drug court judges and sheriffs. But some addiction and public health specialists complain that the company unfairly denigrates its competition, without any data to suggest Vivitrol has better outcomes.
“If you care about actually solving the problem, you cannot stigmatize the most effective treatments,” said Dr. Joshua Sharfstein, a former Maryland health secretary who is now an associate dean at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. “This is a company that has put its own perverted idea of market success ahead of actually solving the problem.”
Following this news, Alkermes stock dropped $2.19 per share, or 3.55%, to close at $59.47 on June 12, 2017.
Further, on November 6, 2017, U.S. Senator Kamala Harris disclosed that she is opening an investigation into Alkermes’ Vivitrol-related sales practices. Senator Harris said that Alkermes “aggressively marketed” its medication, convincing judges and prison officials to use it rather than more proven addiction treatments and spent hundreds of thousands of dollars lobbying policymakers.
Following this news, Alkermes stock dropped $2.23, or 4.37%, to close at $48.76 on November 6, 2017.
Have You Purchased or Acquired Alkermes Shares?
If you purchased or otherwise acquired Alkermes shares and would like to speak privately with a securities attorney to learn whether you may have legal claims, please complete the form to the right or contact John Kehoe, Esq., (215) 792-6676, Ext. 801, [email protected] or send an e-mail to [email protected].
About Kehoe Law Firm, P.C.
Kehoe Law Firm, P.C. is a multidisciplinary, plaintiff–side law firm dedicated to protecting investors and consumers from corporate fraud, negligence, and other wrongdoing. Driven by a strong and principled sense of social responsibility and obtaining justice for the aggrieved, Kehoe Law Firm, P.C. represents plaintiffs seeking to recover investment losses resulting from securities fraud, breaches of fiduciary duty, corporate wrongdoing or malfeasance, those harmed by anticompetitive practices, and consumers victimized by fraud, false claims, deception or data breaches. Together, the partners of Kehoe Law Firm, P.C. have spent more than 30 years prosecuting precedent-setting securities and financial fraud cases in federal and state courts on behalf of institutional and individual clients.