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SPICY IP TIDBIT: CIPLA Strikes Again!


CIPLA, after its recent victory in the Delhi HC is all inspired to spread its wings out further. As per a recent report in The Hindu, CIPLA is all set to sell a generic version of Deferasirox. Deferasirox, originally a Novartis drug, is sold internationally under the Exjade brand name and is useful for treatment of iron overload that occurs due to blood transfusions. It is therefore particularly useful for patients suffering from thalassemia and other such conditions.

As per the report, Novartis plans to launch Exjade in India in the second quarter of 2008 and Cipla’s version will be sold locally under the brand name Desirox and will cost consumers about Rs. 1000 per month.

Novartis has applied for a patent on Deferasirox in India and all are expecting a fresh spate of patent litigation involving CIPLA. Lawyers and academicians atleast are looking forward to this!

One comment.

  1. AvatarAnonymous

    Looks like we are heading for chaos..

    i. the government feels it is appropriate to give a CL only in case of epidemic like situation (cancer “may not be” an epidemic)
    http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/Healthcare/Govt_may_use_compulsory_licensing_for_drug_companies_only_in_emergency/articleshow/2921237.cms

    ii. While NGOs and generics are contemplating CLs, there is no clarity yet on whether the patentee has a right to be heard in the case of a CL for a life-saving drug

    iii. according to the ET article, as it quotes a senior official of DIPP (Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion), an epidemic is when ‘it impacts a large chunk of population and needs immediate solution’

    iv. Generics like the idea of infringing a patent coz the patented drug is usually over-priced. The courts are likely to let them do that.

    prices for most life-saving drugs are still sky-rocketing!

    [ET article of March 31st, 2008 quotes the following drugs that CPAA is considering for CLs – Genentech’s and Roche’s Herceptin (Rs 1.3 lakh per injection, to be taken 10-15 times), Roche’s Mabthera (Rs 1 lakh per injection, to be taken 10-12 times) and Tarceva (Rs 48,000 for 30 tablets, dosage details not known), Novartis controversial drug Glivec (Rs 1 lakh for a month’s treatment), Astrazeneca’s breast cancer drug Arimidex (Rs 3429 for 14 tablets, to be taken for 1-2 years) and Zoladex (Rs 8,910, dosage details not known), GSK’s Hycamtin (price and dosage details not available). ]

    So if the govt sticks to its ‘epidemic’ logic there will be no respite for the patients for sure – there might be more litigation in the hope for a Roche-like order. There might be more generics willing to deal with the risk of litigation. Two things that would definitely suffer would be – R&D and the patients.

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