Merck scored a victory in its patent battle with India's Glenmark Pharmaceuticals over copycats of the drugmaker's diabetes meds Januvia and Janumet, as India's highest court blocked the generics company from marketing its cheap versions of the drugs in the country.
Gilead Sciences has been able to withstand scathing criticism at home over the prices of its hep C cures, negotiate with stingy price watchdogs abroad and face down criticism in developing countries by giving generics producers access to formulations and technology. But can it stand up to a possible attack by the U.S. military?
Amgen is none too eager for Novartis to roll out its newly FDA-approved biosimilar version of its blockbuster Neupogen, and for now, it's getting its way: A U.S. appeals court has blocked sales of the copycat while the companies resolve a patent dispute.
Drugmakers may be willing to get on board with patent reform, a process they've in the past been blamed for holding up. But first, they have a very clear condition: Congress must help them thwart pharma patent challenger Kyle Bass.
Texas hedge funder Kyle Bass says he's going after drug patents because the pharma industry milks the healthcare system by "evergreening" drug patents. But now, Bass and his Coalition for Affordable Drugs are challenging a patent on Imbruvica, the Johnson & Johnson and Pharmacyclics cancer treatment that was just approved in 2013. Is that evergreening?
Actavis is trying to encourage an appeals court to let it force patients over to a new, patent-protected version of Alzheimer's treatment Namenda. Hundreds of millions in sales rest on the decision. But so far, the judges aren't offering any clues about their answer.
Hedge fund manager Kyle Bass has struck out at drug patents once again. Just weeks after challenging two patents on an Acorda Therapeutics drug, Bass asked the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to reconsider coverage on two Shire meds, Lialda and Gattex.
In a year when several of his peers won big payoffs for one extraordinary reason or another, Amgen CEO Robert Bradway earned just about as much as he had the previous year, give or take a few hundred thousand. Small comfort--though some comfort, perhaps--to the thousands of employees facing job cuts as Amgen prepares for biosimilar competition to its top-selling meds.
Talk about unintended consequences of a patent ruling. Pfizer's unprecedented effort to fight Lyrica copies in England has doctors and pharmacists squabbling, and the National Health Service stepping in to keep the peace.
Generics makers aren't the only ones filing challenges to pharma patents anymore. Hedge funds are doing it, too, and it's got drugmakers on edge.