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US Judge Upholds Validity Of Merck's Vytorin Patent

By Peter Loftus Of DOW JONES NEWSWIRES A federal judge has upheld the validity of a U.S. patent covering Merck & Co.'s (MRK) Vytorin cholesterol-lowering drug, which could stave off competing generic copies for several years. In an opinion released Friday, U.S. District Judge Jose Linares in federal court in Newark, N.J., said a patent for Vytorin was valid and enforceable. Merck, based in Whitehouse Station, N.J., said in a recent regulatory filing it expects its U.S. exclusivity for Vytorin and a related drug, Zetia, to expire in April 2017. Mylan Inc. (MYL) had applied for U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval to sell a generic version of Vytorin before its patent protection expired, arguing that the patent was invalid and unenforceable. Schering-Plough, which was acquired by Merck in 2009, filed a patent-infringement lawsuit against Mylan in late 2009, seeking to block Mylan's product. A trial was held in December 2011, leading to Judge Linares's opinion Friday. On a conference call with analysts Friday morning, Merck Chief Executive Kenneth Frazier said he was anticipating a favorable decision. "We believe this is a patent that is valid and enforceable," he said. A Mylan spokeswoman couldn't immediately be reached. Earlier Friday, Merck reported first-quarter Vytorin sales of $444 million and Zetia sales of $614 million. Merck previously reached a settlement of patent litigation for Zetia with generics manufacturer Glenmark Pharmaceuticals. The pact will allow Glenmark to sell generic Zetia in December 2016, subject to final regulatory approval. -By Peter Loftus, Dow Jones Newswires; +1-215-982-5581;

Stock News for Mylan Inc. (MYL)
04/24/201515:59:35Mylan Raises Bid for Generic Drug Maker Perrigo -- 6th Update
04/24/201513:04:32Mylan Raises Bid for Generic Drug Maker Perrigo -- 5th Update
04/24/201512:16:36Mylan Raises Bid for Generic Drug Maker Perrigo -- 4th Update
04/24/201512:09:00Perrigo Rejects Mylan Unsolicited Offer
04/24/201511:21:57Mylan to Make Formal Bid for Perrigo -- 3rd Update
04/24/201511:11:04Mylan to Make Formal Bid for Perrigo -- 2nd Update
04/24/201510:51:52Mylan to Make Formal Bid for Perrigo -- Update
04/24/201510:50:09Mylan to Make Formal Bid for Perrigo
04/24/201510:36:24Mylan to Make Formal Bid for Perrigo
04/24/201509:44:00Mylan To Commence Formal Offer To Acquire Perrigo For US$60 In...
04/24/201509:30:52Mylan NV PT Raised to $82.00 at Deutsche Bank (MYL)
04/23/201505:00:00Mylan Launches Generic Sofosbuvir Tablets, MyHepâ¢, in India
04/22/201521:17:45Meet Pharma's Newest Movers and Shakers, Driving M&A
04/22/201520:12:06Meet Pharma's Newest Movers and Shakers, Driving M&A
04/22/201512:45:50The Rise of the 'Stichting,' an Obscure Takeover Defense
04/22/201511:50:25The Rise of the 'Stichting,' an Obscure Takeover Defense
04/22/201510:49:53CRT Capital Increases Mylan NV Price Target to $87.00 (MYL)
04/22/201510:10:09Abbott Labs Reports Better-Than-Expected Profit
04/22/201509:46:46Abbott Labs Reports Better-Than-Expected Profit -- Update
04/22/201509:37:05Abbott Labs Reports Better-Than-Expected Profit

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