Big win for Endo: Court rules against Actavis in generic painkiller patent spat
- In patent litigation pitting Endo International as a branded manufacturer on one side against Actavis, Teva, and Sun Pharmaceuticals on the other, Endo has prevailed. It will retain patent protection for its painkiller Opana ER until 2023.
- Actavis has 60 days to comply with the court's decision, or it will have to pay damages to Endo International.
- One generics company, Impax, which struck a deal with Endo to make a generic version of Opana ER in 2010, will be able to continue production of its drug.
Endo has faced falling sales because of widespread genericization of Opana ER, and this decision, which came from U.S. District Judge Thomas P. Griesa in Manhattan, comes as a relief to Endo's CEO Rajiv De Silva.
For the first quarter of 2015, sales of Opana ER were $90 million, compared with $101 million for the first quarter of 2014. Actavis produces a generic, non-crush-resistant version of Opana ER, which accounts for roughly 13% of sales in this category. With Actavis out of the market, Endo is bound to have a stronger third quarter in terms of Opana ER sales (since it will take up to 60 days to cease distribution of generic versions of the drug).
Actavis has yet to issue a comment on the decision.