Consider this scenario from Fred Hassan'sÂ nightmares: The $800 million Clarinex, ostensibly under patent till 2020, falls early victim to generic competition. Early, as in next year. In court documents filed April 16, the Indian generics maker Orchid Chemicals alleges that Clarinex RediTabs was never covered by Schering-Plough's '274 patent. If that's so, then Orchid could launch its version of RediTabs almost immediately, the documents state. And so, apparently, could other copycat drugmakers circling the allergy med.
Schering disagrees with Orchid, of course. And though Orchid has some smart lawyers on the case, so does Schering-Plough. We'll have to wait and see what the court decides.
ALSO: Drugmakers are lobbying Congress to change a particular patent rule that allows protection to be canceled if the patent holder misrepresented or concealed info in its application. Generics makers, however, say the penalty is necessary, because without it, branded drugmakers could "cheat and get away with it," making it more difficult for cheaper generic meds to make it to market. Report
Hassan gets $30M pay package
Schering-Plough profits drop
India eyes R&D opportunities
The specter of generic competition grows