1

MARY ELIZABETH WILLIAMS – “Martin Shkreli is the Donald Trump of drug development”: Why even a biotech exec agrees Turing’s pill price-gouging is “even skeevier than you think”

“Martin Shkreli is the Donald Trump of drug development,” my friend Frank tells me. “He’s a hedge fund manager who gives hedge fund managers a bad name.”

Frank — a chief scientific officer at a biotech company (and whose name has been changed to protect his and his family’s privacy) — is talking to me Tuesday morning, en route to a series of meetings at MD Anderson, about the controversial 32-year-old CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals and the company’s recent headline-making decision to raise the price of toxoplasmosis drug Daraprim from $13.50 a pill to $750 — an increase of 5,455 percent. A New York Times story earlier this week by Andrew Pollack on Turing — which acquired Daraprim just last month — quickly drewhorrified reactions on social media, including a response from Hillary Clinton, who said, “Price gouging like this in the specialty drug market is outrageous. Tomorrow I’ll lay out a plan to take it on.”

Read More