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Questcor Provides Updated New Paid Prescription Trends

ANAHEIM, Calif., Sept. 10, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Commencing on September 12, 2011, Questcor Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: QCOR) will utilize an updated presentation for meetings with investors. This presentation was filed under Form 8-K with the SEC on Friday, September 9 at 3 p.m. PST and will be posted on the SEC's website prior to market open on Monday, September 12.  The presentation includes an update regarding prescription trends for the Company's primary product, H.P. Acthar Gel (repository corticotropin injection) through the end of August 2011 as follows:

- For acute exacerbations of multiple sclerosis (MS), the run-rate of new, paid prescriptions for the quarter ending September 30, 2011, based on the first two months of the quarter, is approximately 10% higher than the number of new, paid prescriptions in the quarter ended June 30, 2011.

- For each of nephrotic syndrome (NS) and infantile spasms (IS), the run-rate of new, paid prescriptions for the quarter ending September 30, 2011, based on the first two months for the quarter is approximately equal to the number of new, paid prescriptions in the quarter ended June 30, 2011.

The Company has calculated "run-rate" for the quarter ending September 30, 2011 by taking its preliminary results for the first two months of the quarter and multiplying that amount by 1.5.

The Company is also disclosing the following unaudited balance sheet information as of September 6, 2011:

- Cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments: $170 million.

- Accounts receivable: $19 million.

Questcor expects to post the updated presentation on its website prior to Monday, September 12.

Important Information Regarding Prescriptions and Net Sales

Net sales of Acthar are derived from our sales of vials to CuraScript SD, which in turn sells Acthar primarily to specialty pharmacies. These specialty pharmacies place orders to CuraScript SD based on their respective levels of sales and inventory practices. End-user demand for Acthar results from physicians writing prescriptions to patients for the treatment of MS exacerbations, NS, IS and various other conditions. Recommended treatment regimens among physicians prescribing Acthar vary within each therapeutic area. Due to various factors, including inventory levels at both the specialty pharmacies and at CuraScript SD, the duration of treatment regimens and the timing of the placement of re-fill prescription orders, there is typically a delay between changes in prescription levels and changes in the levels of orders we receive from CuraScript SD. Additionally, treatment regimens and patient compliance with physician recommended treatment regimens, may vary over time.

Additionally, our ability to accurately determine the number of prescriptions is subject to the following important notes:

(1) Because Acthar prescriptions are filled at specialty pharmacies, we do not receive complete information regarding either the number of prescriptions or the number of vials by therapeutic area for all of the patients being treated with Acthar. However, we are able to monitor trends in payer mix and areas of therapeutic use for new (non-refill) Acthar prescriptions based on data we receive from our reimbursement support center. We estimate that over 90% of new Acthar prescriptions are processed by this support center, but believe that very few refill prescriptions are processed there.

(2) Prescription figures include related conditions for each therapeutic area. Related conditions are diagnoses that are either alternative descriptions of the medical condition or are closely related to the medical condition which is the focus of the table. For example, a prescription for "Demyelinating disease of the central nervous system" would be included as an MS related condition for purpose of this table. About 5% of the prescriptions referenced for a specific indication are for related conditions.

(3) A new prescription may or may not represent a new patient or a new therapy for the patient receiving the prescription. We use business rules to determine whether a prescription should be classified as new for counting purposes. From time to time, we may modify these rules.

About Questcor

Questcor Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company whose primary product helps patients with serious, difficult-to-treat medical conditions.  Questcor's primary product is H.P. Acthar® Gel (repository corticotropin injection), an injectable drug that is approved by the FDA for the treatment of 19 indications.  Of these 19 indications, Questcor currently generates substantially all of its net sales from three indications: the treatment of acute exacerbations of multiple sclerosis in adults, the treatment of nephrotic syndrome, and the treatment of infantile spasms in children under two years of age. With respect to nephrotic syndrome, the FDA has approved Acthar to "induce a diuresis or a remission of proteinuria in the nephrotic syndrome without uremia of the idiopathic type or that due to lupus erythematosus."  Questcor is also exploring the use of Acthar to treat systemic lupus erythematosus, for which Acthar is approved as both a maintenance therapy and to treat exacerbations.  Questcor is also exploring the possibility of developing markets for other on-label indications and the possibility of pursuing FDA approval of additional indications not currently on the Acthar label where there is high unmet medical need.  For more information, please visit

Note: Except for the historical information contained herein, this press release contains forward-looking statements that have been made pursuant to the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements relate to future events or our future financial performance. In some cases, you can identify forward-looking statements by terminology such as "believes," "continue," "could," "estimates," "expects," "growth," "may," "plans," "potential," "should," "substantial" or "will" or the negative of such terms and other comparable terminology. These statements are only predictions. Actual events or results may differ materially. Factors that could cause or contribute to such differences include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Our reliance on Acthar for substantially all of our net sales and profits;
  • Reductions in vials used per prescription resulting from changes in treatment regimens by physicians or patient compliance with physician recommendations;
  • The complex nature of our manufacturing process and the potential for supply disruptions or other business disruptions;
  • The lack of patent protection for Acthar; and the possible FDA approval and market introduction of competitive products;
  • Our ability to generate revenue from sales of Acthar to treat on-label indications associated with NS, and our ability to develop other therapeutic uses for Acthar;
  • Research and development risks, including risks associated with Questcor's preliminary work in the area of nephrotic syndrome and our reliance on third-parties to conduct research and development and the ability of research and development to generate successful results;
  • Regulatory changes or other policy actions by governmental authorities and other third parties as recently adopted U.S. health care reform legislation is implemented;
  • Our ability to receive high reimbursement levels from third party payers;
  • An increase in the proportion of our Acthar unit sales comprised of Medicaid-eligible patients and government entities;
  • Our ability to estimate reserves required for Acthar used by government entities and Medicaid-eligible patients  and the impact that unforeseen invoicing of historical Medicaid sales may have upon our results;
  • Our ability to operate within an industry that is highly regulated at both the Federal and state level;
  • Our ability to effectively manage our growth and our reliance on key personnel;
  • The impact to our business caused by economic conditions;
  • Our ability to protect our proprietary rights;
  • Our ability to maintain effective controls over financial reporting;
  • The risk of product liability lawsuits;
  • Unforeseen business interruptions;
  • Volatility in Questcor's monthly and quarterly Acthar shipments and end-user demand, as well as volatility in our stock price; and
  • Other risks discussed in Questcor's annual report on Form 10-K for the year ended March 31, 2010, and other documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The risk factors and other information contained in these documents should be considered in evaluating Questcor's prospects and future financial performance.

Questcor undertakes no obligation to publicly release the result of any revisions to these forward-looking statements, which may be made to reflect events or circumstances after the date of this release.

For more information, please visit or  

SOURCE Questcor Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
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