A niche blog dedicated to the issues that arise when supplementary protection certificates (SPCs) extend patents beyond their normal life -- and to the respective positions of patent owners, investors, competitors and consumers. The blog also addresses wider issues that may be of interest or use to those involved in the extension of patent rights. You can email The SPC Blog here

Tuesday 1 February 2011

GSK reverse on Dutch Advair patent and SPC

Reuters reported last week ("GSK says considering appeal to a higher court") that GlaxoSmithKline lost a Dutch patent action last Wednesday which concerned its top-selling lung drug Advair, in what the report describes as "the latest in a series of legal battles across Europe over the inhaled medicine".  Advair, known as Seretide in most of Europe, attracted sales of £5 billion ($7.9 billion) last year, giving GSK 18 percent of group revenue.

GSK said in a statement that a court in The Hague had ruled in favour of joint claimants Novartis units Sandoz BV and Hexal AG, ruling that the Dutch part of the European patent for Advair, as well as its supplementary protection certificate, were invalid.  It is understood that the company is considering an appeal which, given the value of the product in the market, is understandable.  GSK has however previously suffered patent defeats on Advair in Britain, Ireland and Germany.

If any reader has more specific details of the court's decision, we'd love to hear about it.

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