Merck Wins SINGULAIR® Patent Infringement Lawsuit
Merck & Co., Inc. announced that the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey has ruled in Merck’s favor in a patent infringement suit against Teva Pharmaceuticals USA Inc. (Teva). Teva was seeking FDA approval to sell a generic version of 4, 5 and 10 mg tablets of SINGULAIR (montelukast sodium), Merck’s asthma and allergic rhinitis medicine.
In his decision, Judge Garrett E. Brown upheld Merck’s patent on SINGULAIR and ruled that Teva committed infringement. Judge Brown also issued an injunction blocking the approval of Teva’s generic versions until the August 2012 expiration of the patent.
“The court appropriately ruled that the patent for SINGULAIR in the U.S. is valid,” said Bruce Kuhlik, executive vice president and general counsel of Merck. “We invest heavily in the R&D that is needed to discover innovative medicines like SINGULAIR, and we will vigorously defend our intellectual property rights.”
Merck filed the patent infringement lawsuit against Teva in February 2007. The trial was heard before Judge Brown in February 2009.
Merck & Co., Inc. is a global research-driven pharmaceutical company dedicated to putting patients first. Established in 1891, Merck currently discovers, develops, manufactures and markets vaccines and medicines to address unmet medical needs. The Company devotes extensive efforts to increase access to medicines through far-reaching programs that not only donate Merck medicines but help deliver them to the people who need them. Merck also publishes unbiased health information as a not-for-profit service. For more information, visit http://www.merck.com.
This press release contains “forward-looking statements” as that term is defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements are based on management’s current expectations and involve risks and uncertainties, which may cause results to differ materially from those set forth in the statements. The forward-looking statements may include statements regarding product development, product potential or financial performance. No forward-looking statement can be guaranteed and actual results may differ materially from those projected. Merck undertakes no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise. Forward-looking statements in this press release should be evaluated together with the many uncertainties that affect Merck’s business, particularly those mentioned in the risk factors and cautionary statements in Item 1A of Merck’s Form 10-K for the year ended Dec. 31, 2008, and in any risk factors or cautionary statements contained in the Company’s periodic reports on Form 10-Q or current reports on Form 8-K, which the Company incorporates by reference.
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