Turkey’s competition board said Friday that it imposed fines on the Turkish units of pharmaceutical companies Novartis and Roche for trying to popularize a more expensive medicine used for eye diseases over a cheaper one.
The two companies are said to have violated competition rules by promoting the use of Lucentis, a drug more expensive than Altuzan, both of which are used to treat eye diseases.
Lucentis is used to treat wet age-related macular degeneration. It is also used for diabetic eye disease and other problems of the retina.
It is injected into the eye to help slow vision loss from these diseases. Lucentis is the brand name for the drug, which is called ranibizumab.
Altuzan is the Turkish version of Roche’s Avastin drug. It is also used to treat wet age-related macular degeneration, diabetic eye disease and other problems of the retina. Avastin is the brand name for the drug, which is called bevacizumab.