PUBLIC backlash and pressure from US politicians has led to pharmaceuticals company chief executive Martin Shkreli to announce that he will retract the decision to increase the price of a drug used by people living with AIDS, which he had increased by 5455 per cent.

Earlier this week, New York-based pharmaceuticals company Turing Pharmaceuticals increased the cost of one of its recently-acquired prescription drugs Daraprim, which people living with AIDS use, from $13.50 USD  per pill to $750 USD per pill.

[showads ad=MREC]“Yes, it is absolutely a reaction,” Shkreli told NBC News.

“There were mistakes made with respect to helping people understand why we took this action. I think that it makes sense to lower the price in response to the anger that was felt by people.”

He continued: “It’s very easy to see a large drug price increase and say ‘Gosh, those people must be gouging.’ But when you find out that the company is not really making any money.”

“I think in the society we live in today it’s easy to want to villainse people,” he said. “Obviously, we’re in an election cycle where this is very, very tough topic for people and it’s very sensitive. And I understand the outrage.”

The new price for the prescription drug for the American market is yet to be announced.

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