Allergan to appeal against RESTASIS patents verdict


In September Allergen deviated from its normal course of paying the Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe in upstate NY to ownership of the patents which were then let out back to the company.

Allergan, a leading global biopharmaceutical company, has acknowledged that the US District Court for the Eastern District of Texas has issued an adverse trial decision finding that the four asserted patents covering Restasis (cyclosporine ophthalmic emulsion) 0.05% are invalid. Restasis earned $1.5 billion previous year. It was in federal court, where Allergan had said at the time of the deal it wouldn't try to use the Mohawks' sovereign immunity. In an email to NCPR, St. Regis Mohawk Tribe general counsel Dale White said the tribe is also reviewing the decision and "its impact on our business". He wrote "sovereign immunity should not be treated as a monetizable commodity", that, in this case, would allow the drug company to dodge the legal limitations of a patent. "Because that is in essence is [sic] what the agreement between Allergan and the Tribe does, the Court has serious reservations about whether the contract between Allergan and the Tribe should be recognised as valid, rather than being held void as being contrary to public policy". In Monday's ruling, Judge Bryson criticized Allergan's deal with the tribe and said such arrangements could ultimately damage the country's patent process.

Bryson of the Eastern District of Texas doesn't signify that generic adaptation of the drug will be obtainable soon. The FDA has not approved any copycat versions of the drug.

In September, Allergan resorted to an unusual tactic of paying the Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe in upstate NY to take possession of the patents, which were then leased back to the company.