10-5-17 5:07 PM EDT | Email Article

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office ruled in favor of Eli Lilly and Co (NYSE: LLY) Thursday in an inter partes review of the ’209 patent for Alimta, a chemotherapy drug for lung cancer.

“Based on the record before us, we conclude that petitioner has failed to demonstrate by a preponderance of the evidence that claims 1–22 of the ’209 patent are unpatentable,” the written decision said. 

The decision, which involves a method of administering a particular chemotherapeutic formula, proved a setback to multiple petitioners, including Teva Pharmaceuticals Industries Ltd (ADR) (NYSE: TEVA).

Teva had approached the Patent Trial and Appeal Board in an attempt to invalidate Eli Lilly’s ownership claims, which were upheld by an appeals court in January. The earlier ruling permitted Eli Lilly to block Teva from selling its generic version of the drug through April 2022.

In July, Eli Lilly won a similar patent dispute in Europe with rival Actavis.

The victories were critical. Alimta is Eli Lilly’s best-selling oncology drug and contributed $2.283 billion to the company's 2016 sales — 10.8 percent of the firm’s annual revenue.

At the time of publication, Teva was trading down 2.6 percent and Eli Lilly was up 0.7 percent on the day.

Neither company responded to requests for comment.

Related Link:
Intense Competition Pressures Eli Lilly, Leerink Downgrades

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