On Thursday, Pfizer announced that it plans to introduce a generic version of its antidepressant Zoloft in the United States as soon as a rival generic hits the market, which could be as early as Saturday (in what is known as the sale of an “authorized generic”). The patent on Zoloft expires in two days. […]

After being bombarded with 20 amicus briefs, the U.S. Supreme Court has opted out of ruling on the LabCorp v. Metabolite Laboratories case (U.S., No. 04-607) saying that it had “improvidently” agreed to hear the case in the first place and it dismissed the appeal. Basically, thousands of patents on medical tests and genes dodged […]

Pfizer announced today that the United Kingdom’s Court of Appeal has upheld the exclusivity of the main patent covering atorvastatin, the active ingredient in the company’s cholesterol lowering drug Lipitor. The appellate court ruling affirms a lower court decision in October 2005 which found that a proposed generic from Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd., an India-based pharmaceutical […]

In Abbott Labs. v. Andrx Pharm., Inc., No. 05-1433, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit held that a preliminary injunction granted pursuant to plaintiff’s claims alleging infringement of its patents relating to extended release formulations of a broad spectrum antibiotic should be vacated where (a) the plaintiff failed to establish a likelihood […]

Merck is on the verge of losing patent protection for its multi-million dollar drug compound Simvastatin, paving the way for euphoric generic players to enter the U.S. Simvastatin market, which was worth around U.S. $4.4 Billion worldwide in 2005. Even though there is no current Para IV litigation for the Simvastatin tablet, the story so […]

Today, the US Supreme Court refused to become involved in a closely watched case that tested the legality of multimillion-dollar settlements between big pharma drug companies and their generic rivals. The issue in that case was whether these big drug companies – such as Schering-Plough, the company involved in the case – should be allowed […]

Timir Chheda has prepared a clickable list comparing the Model Rules with the PTO Code, which you can find here: http://www.jmls.edu/ripl/vol5/issue3/chheda2.pdf It’s often important to look at both sets of rules during prosecution.

I have written extensively about the ethical issues that can arise during patent prosecution and litigation. This summer, I’m tackling two topics which, stated simply, are: what patent agents can and can’t do, and subject matter conflicts during patent prosecution. This post relates to one issue concerning the former. First, some definitions: nonlawyers are people […]