Eli Lilly Sues Watson Pharmaceuticals for Patent Infringement

Indianapolis, Indiana – Patent counsel for Eli Lilly and Company of Indianapolis, IN, filed a complaint alleging Watson Pharmaceuticals, Inc., and Watson Laboratories, Inc., both of Corona, CA, and Watson Pharma, Inc., of Morristown, NJ, are infringing certain patents covering a prescription drug used to treat and prevent postmenopausal osteoporosis.

Among the many others in their intellectual property portfolio, Lilly holds the following patents issued by the U.S. Patent Office: Patent No. 6,458,811, titled BENZOTHIOPHENES FORMULATIONS CONTAINING SAME AND METHODS; Patent No. 6,797,719, titled BENZOTHIOPHENES, FORMULATIONS CONTAINING SAME, AND METHODS; and Patent No. 6,894,064, also titled BENZOTHIOPHENES, FORMULATIONS CONTAINING SAME, AND METHODS. These three patents relate to the formulation of raloxifene hydrochloride, which is sold by Lilly under the trademark EVISTA(R), for pharmaceutical or therapeutic purposes.

The complaint states that the defendants have filed Abbreviated New Drug Application No. 200825 with the FDA, seeking to market a generic version of the raloxifene drug while claiming that Lilly’s patents are invalid, unenforceable, and or would not be infringed by the generic version. Lilly seeks rulings that its patents are valid, have been infringed by the ANDA filing, and would be infringed by doctors prescribing the generic formulation.

This case has been assigned to Judge Sarah Evans Barker and then-Magistrate Judge Jane E. Magnus-Stinsonin the Southern District of Indiana, and assigned case no. 1:10-cv-00549-SEB-JMS.

Practice Tip: A generic drug must contain the same active ingredients as the original formulation; it is possible for a generic drug developer to obtain a patent on its formulation, but not on the active ingredients.

Complaint – Eli Lilly v. Watson

Further information about this case is as follows:

Filed: May 3, 2010 as 1:2010cv00549 Updated: May 4, 2010 21:12:59

Plaintiff: ELI LILLY AND COMPANY

Defendants: WATSON LABORATORIES, INC., WATSON PHARMA, INC. and WATSON PHARMACEUTICALS, INC.

Judge: Sarah Evans Barker

Cause Of Action: Patent Infringement

Court: Seventh Circuit > Indiana > Southern District Court

Type: Intellectual Property > Patent

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