Federal Trade Commissioner Thomas Rosch publicly criticized the FTCs staff for bogging down and effectively killing the proposed merger of two small companies that make equipment for cryogenic treatment of cancer. The chairman and remaining two commissioners issued a joint response coming to the staffs defense.
Rosch concludes in a statement that by blocking this merger de facto, the commission acts contrary to the public interest and to its statutory authority to block mergers only when it has reason to believe that they are illegal.
Endocare, Irvine, Calif., announced June 8 it had abandoned a merger agreement reached in November 2008 with Galil Medical, Yokneam, Israel. The companies develop and sell technology that freezes cancerous tumors, which the Food and Drug Administration has approved for the treatment of kidney and prostate cancers. Endocare instead entered a new agreement to be acquired by HealthTronics, Austin, Texas.