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Publications / 26.9.2019

A pharmaceutical cease & desist, or how pharmaceutical companies defend their patents in court / Delovoy Peterburg

The Russian Government allocates millions of rubles every year to purchase orphan drugs. The market is attractive for both Russian and foreign producers of medicines. This triggers a high level of competition and quiet pharmaceutical wars which predominantly take place in courtrooms. The odds were in favour of the St. Petersburg firm Biocad in one of the fights.

In summer 2018, pharmaceutical company Biocad applied to Rospatent (the Russian Federal Agency for Intellectual Property, Patents and Trademarks) objecting to Eurasian patent EA No. 19998 being in effect in Russia. This patent belongs to an Israeli company, Yeda Research and Development Co Ltd. (Yeda), and has been used in the formulation of a medicine against multiple sclerosis, Copaxone, which is manufactured by Teva LLC (a Russian subsidiary of an Israeli company, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd). In January, Rospatent agreed and terminated patent No. 19998 in Russia. The patent failed to pass the novelty test, which is a mandatory condition. The essence of the patent boils down to the drug regimen and dosage.

Vera Zotova, an Associate in our Intellectual Property and Information Technology Practice, commented to Delovoy Peterburg on the dispute between Biocad and Yeda Research and Development Co Ltd. She spoke about the relevance of the Eurasian patent being challenged for the production of the medicine in Russia.

Read the full article (in Russian)

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