Bloomberg News

AstraZeneca Settles Patent Case With Handa Over Seroquel XR

September 29, 2011

(Updates with company statement in fourth paragraph.)

Sept. 29 (Bloomberg) -- AstraZeneca Plc, the U.K.’s second- biggest drugmaker, said it settled a patent lawsuit against Handa Pharmaceuticals LLC over a generic version of the antipsychotic medicine Seroquel XR.

The settlement, reached in federal court in Trenton, New Jersey, resolves a lawsuit that AstraZeneca filed against Handa, which sought U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval to launch a copy of the extended-release tablets of Seroquel, according to a statement by London-based AstraZeneca.

Handa, which won’t dispute that two AstraZeneca patents are valid and enforceable, will get a license to launch a generic version in the U.S. on Nov. 1, 2016, or earlier if certain conditions are met, according to the statement. AstraZeneca’s patents on Seroquel XR range from March 2012 to November 2017, according to the statement.

“We believe this agreement reaffirms our intellectual property rights and is the right business decision for AstraZeneca at this time,” Chief Executive Officer David Brennan said in the statement. “Seroquel XR remains an important part of our company’s portfolio benefiting patients and physicians throughout the world.”

Stephen Cary, the chief operating officer of Fremont, California-based Handa, said the settlement resolves a case that was supposed to go to trial on Oct. 3. He declined to comment further.

AstraZeneca is still pursuing patent lawsuits against other generic drugmakers over Seroquel XR.

Seroquel accounted for $5.3 billion in worldwide sales last year, said Stephanie Andrzejewski, an AstraZeneca spokeswoman.

The case is AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals LP v. Handa Pharmaceuticals, U.S. District Court, District of New Jersey (Trenton).

--Editors: Peter Blumberg, Michael Hytha

To contact the reporter on this story: David Voreacos in Newark, New Jersey at dvoreacos@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at mhytha@bloomberg.net.


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