Court upholds suspension of generic Plavix sales

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A federal appeals court upheld an injunction putting a halt to Apotex’s sale of a generic version of the blockbuster heart drug Plavix, The Wall Street Journal reported. The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington upheld an August injunction issued by the US District Court in Manhattan. The ruling marks a legal victory for Bristol-Myers Squibb and Sanofi-Aventis, marketers of Plavix. The appellate court ruling means that Canadian generics company Apotex may not resume selling a cheaper copycat version of Plavix in the US, pending the outcome of a patent rights trial set to begin in January. Apotex began selling generic Plavix in August despite the existence of a Sanofi US patent for Plavix that doesn’t expire until 2011. Apotex argued that the patent is invalid and unenforceable, a contention disputed by Bristol-Myers and Sanofi.
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