Monday, April 10, 2006

Harvard, MIT suing Eli Lilly over patent

Remember oral arguments in the Metabolite case about how the inventors (university professors) were trying to patent laws of nature? Well, it's deja vu all over again.
Defending against a law suit brought by Harvard and MIT, Lilly's brief contends the university patent is invalid because natural processes are not patentable. And, remember the Columbia University case where patent rights were kept alive through continuations? Lilly's brief notes that the university patent wasn't granted in a timely manner. The patent was approved 16 years after the filing date and only after a new set of claims was made in 2001. Who are the trolls?

From the Indianapolis Star:

Eli Lilly and Co. takes on academic heavyweights Harvard and MIT in a patent infringement trial slated to start today before a federal court jury in Massachusetts.

If Lilly loses the case, it faces prospects of forking over millions of dollars in damages and past-due royalties to the two elite universities, an affiliated research institute and a small cancer research firm.
The Indianapolis drug maker's trial brief, filed last week, estimates damages of $24.15 million if Lilly loses the case. That includes "hypothetically negotiated license" fees of $2.15 million and a "running royalty" of $22 million on U.S. sales of two Lilly drugs at issue in the case.
The lawsuit was filed against Lilly in 2002 by Harvard College, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Whitehead Institute and Ariad Pharmaceuticals of Cambridge, Mass.
It alleges that two Lilly drugs, Evista and Xigris, infringe a patent issued in 2002 on the workings of a "messenger protein" in the human body that plays a role in inflammation. Scientists who found the protein or discovered how to interfere with its activity include two Nobel Prize winners, David Baltimore and Phillip Sharp.
Lilly said in its brief that it will try to persuade a jury that Evista and Xigris don't infringe the patent because they were developed well before the patent was issued and there is no proof that the drugs even inhibit the workings of the messenger protein.
Lilly's brief also contends the patent is invalid because natural processes are not patentable. "As such only a patient can be a direct infringer" of the patent, said Lilly's brief, which notes that red wine and aspirin also seem to reduce activity of the messenger protein.
Lilly's brief also notes that the patent wasn't granted in a timely manner. It was approved 16 years after the filing date and only after a new set of claims was made in 2001, Lilly said.
The plaintiffs' initial complaint notes that Lilly scientists published findings on how Evista and Xigris inhibit activity of the messenger protein.
Evista, which treats osteoporosis, was Lilly's fourth best- selling drug last year, with sales of $1 billion. Xigris, which treats sepsis, is a minor drug for Lilly.
The patent is licensed to Ariad. The publicly traded company could use any damages that might be awarded. It lost $55.5 million last year on licensing revenue of just $1.2 million.


Blogger Danny Haszard said...

I took zyprexa which was ineffective for my condition and gave me diabetes.

Zyprexa, which is used for the treatment of psychiatric disorders, such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, accounted for 32% of Eli Lilly's $14.6 billion revenue last year.

Zyprexa is the product name for Olanzapine,it is Lilly's top selling drug.It was approved by the FDA in 1996 ,an 'atypical' antipsychotic a newer class of drugs without the motor side effects of the older Thorazine.Zyprexa has been linked to causing diabetes and pancreatitis.

Did you know that Lilly made nearly $3 billion last year on diabetic meds, Actos,Humulin and Byetta?

Yes! They sell a drug that can cause diabetes and then turn a profit on the drugs that treat the condition that they may have caused in the first place!

I was prescribed Zyprexa from 1996 until 2000.
In early 2000 i was shocked to have an A1C test result of 13.9 (normal is 4-6) I have no history of diabetes in my family.
Daniel Haszard

9:54 AM  

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