E.U. Court Tightens Rules For Protecting Drug Patents

Law360, New York (May 8, 2006, 12:00 AM EDT) -- Europe’s highest court has issued a ruling making it more difficult for pharmaceutical companies to protect the market for blockbuster drugs, shooting down an appeal that sought five more years of exclusive rights for the brain-tumor treatment Gliadel.

The precedent established by the European Court of Justice sets a new, tougher legal standard for what constitutes active ingredients in a drug, which could cost brand-name drug makers large amounts in lost sales by limiting their ability to seek exclusivity extensions.

The European appeals court inherited the...
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