Merck Wins Nearly $2.5 Billion from Gilead in Hepatitis C Drug Royalties Verdict

Jury declares Merck’s acquired HCV drug patent valid.

Merck & Co was awarded $2.54 billion in royalties from a hepatitis C virus (HCV) drug patent lawsuit against Gilead Sciences Inc over their blockbuster HCV drugs, Sovaldi and Harvoni.

After a nearly 2-week trial, a federal jury in Delaware found that the Merck patent on these HCV drugs was valid, according to a press release.

“The jury’s verdict upholds patent protections that are essential to the development of new medical treatments,” Merck said in a statement, as reported by Fortune.

Michele Rest, spokeswoman for Gilead, said the company disagrees with the verdict and plans to appeal.

The jury’s decision was based on a 10% royalty rate from the sales of both drugs through August, Fortune reported.

On the New York Stock Exchange, Merck’s stock increased slightly to $63 in late trade, while Gilead’s shares dropped 2% to $74.06 on the NASDAQ.