27 July 2000 19:48 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (CNI)--Swiss life sciences group Novartis claimed victory on Thursday in its patents row with US rival American Home Products (AHP) over the investigational immunosuppressive drug Certican (also known as RAD).
It said the UK Court of Appeal has ruled that Certican does not infringe patent rights licensed to AHP. The unanimous ruling by three presiding judges overturns an earlier decision in the High Court in favour of AHP.
Novartis said the patent in question, which is directed to the use of the known immunosuppressive drug rapamycin in transplantation, was found not to extend to Certican, a synthetic rapamycin derivative.
The Court of Appeal, said Novartis, noted its concern that patents should not have the effect of stifling research into new therapeutic products such as Certican.
Novartis said the latest ruling underlines a similar decision taken in April by the District Court in The Hague. Equivalent litigation is underway in Germany where a decision is pending, added Novartis.
It maintained that Certican is a novel immunosuppressive molecule, independently invented, patented and developed by Novartis.
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