New Delhi: In a partial victory for Ranbaxy Laboratories in its patent litigation against Pfizer, an Australian court has ruled in the Indian company’s favour in a case relating to cholesterol lowering drug atorvastatin (Lipitor).
The court at the same time also ruled that a proposed Ranbaxy generic product under a different patent infringed Pfizer’s basic Lipitor patent (number 601981).
“The Australian Federal court in Victoria had ruled that one of Pfizer’s patent was invalid for in-utility, false suggestion and misrepresentation in obtaining the grant of Australian patent 628198,” Ranbaxy said in statement.
“We are pleased with this decision as it advances the entry of Ranbaxy’s generic atorvastatin in Australia to 18 May, 2012 ,” Ranbaxy’s Senior Vice President-Global Intellectual Property Jay Desmukh said.
The court, however, upheld Pfizer’s appeal on the exclusivity of its basic patent covering atorvastatin, the active ingredient in Lipitor. It found that a proposed Ranbaxy generic product would infringe Pfizer’s basic Lipitor patent (number 601,981).
The ruling, the culmination of a lawsuit filed in 2005 by Ranbaxy, preserves Lipitor’s patent coverage in Australia through May 2012. Ranbaxy can appeal the decision.
“The Australian decision will not impact ongoing Lipitor patent actions in other countries, including the United States. It will continue to vigorously defend against challenges to its intellectual property,” Pfizer said in a statement.