Published Online: Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Hopes for the introduction of a generic version of Pfizer's Lipitor (atorvastatin calcium) suffered a setback as the Supreme Court declined to intervene in Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd's challenge of a lower-court decision that upheld Pfizer's patent for the blockbuster cholesterol-lowering drug. The US patent for Lipitor is not due to expire until March 2010, but Ranbaxy had sought to market a generic version prior to that date. The Supreme Court's action shuts the door on that effort.

Ranbaxy's litigation was not entirely fruitless, however. The Supreme Court ruling also let stand previous action by a lower court that effectively whittled down Lipitor's patent protection by 15 months. Pfizer is currently seeking a ruling from the US Patent and Trademark Office that would restore Lipitor's patent through June 2011.

Latest Articles
James Schiffer, RPh, associate at Allegaert Berger & Vogel LLC, discusses some tips for pharmacists who are facing a Drug Enforcement Administration audit.
Carlos Aquino, founder and president of PharmaDiversion LLC, talks about the importance of the Drug Enforcement Administration's (DEA) diversion website.
Having trouble getting your hands on FluMist?
Novartis is paying $390 million to settle charges that it paid kickbacks to pharmacies to encourage drug sales.
Latest Issues