IBJNews

Lilly suing J&J for patent rights in Alzheimer's drug race

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

Eli Lilly and Co. is seeking to revoke a patent held by a Johnson & Johnson unit, arguing at a London court it might delay availability of a potential treatment for Alzheimer’s disease.

Both companies have drugs in development that use antibodies to target the build-up of plaque in patients’ brains. Lilly argues its treatment, solanezumab, doesn’t infringe a patent held by J&J’s Janssen Alzheimer Immunotherapy Research & Development LLC, according to court documents.

“An effective treatment for Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) has been elusive, despite massive efforts to find one,” Indianapolis-based Lilly said in the documents. The trial, which started Wednesday, “could dictate whether Lilly’s treatment for AD is available to patients in the [United Kingdom] before the expiry of the patent in November 2018, or possibly longer.”

Drug companies are vying to find the first working treatment for a condition that is expected to affect 65 million people worldwide by 2030, causing loss of memory, mood changes, dementia and brain damage. There have been 101 clinical trial failures since 1998, according to the Pharmaceutical Research & Manufacturers of America.

“The patent is valid and the claimant is not entitled to a declaration of non-infringement,” Janssen said in court documents from the trial.

Lilly’s UK media relations team didn’t immediately respond to a phone call seeking comment. Greg Panico, a U.S. spokesman for Janssen, declined to immediately comment.

Janssen’s drug, bapineuzumab, cost more than $500 million to research and ended up “a costly failure,” Lilly lawyer Andrew Waugh told the court Wednesday, citing clinical trial results.

Lilly is proceeding with its treatment, he said. “One of the reasons it hasn’t failed is because it works by a different mechanism to that which is described in the patent.”

Derica Rice, Lilly’s chief financial officer, said in an April earnings call the company would hold another pivotal trial for solanezumab this year.

While solanezumab failed to meet the main goal of two large studies, an analysis of the data from that research found it did slow progression in people with milder stages of Alzheimer’s. The new study, looking only at those patients, will start by the third quarter of 2013, Lilly said in December.

Sanofi CEO Chris Viehbacher said earlier this month the French drugmaker won’t pursue an Alzheimer’s treatment because the science isn’t advanced enough to justify the cost.

The first Alzheimer’s drugs, if successful, would lead to a market worth $20 billion, Barbara Ryan, a former Deutsche Bank analyst estimated last year.

ADVERTISEMENT

  • Competitive drug companies
    Memo-Johnson and Johnson (Risperdal) and,Eli Lilly (Zyprexa) were competitive atypical antipsychotics that got both companies sued for hundreds of millions in damage claims.--Daniel Haszard Zyprexa victim.

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. The east side does have potential...and I have always thought Washington Scare should become an outlet mall. Anyone remember how popular Eastgate was? Well, Indy has no outlet malls, we have to go to Edinburgh for the deep discounts and I don't understand why. Jim is right. We need a few good eastsiders interested in actually making some noise and trying to change the commerce, culture and stereotypes of the East side. Irvington is very progressive and making great strides, why can't the far east side ride on their coat tails to make some changes?

  2. Boston.com has an article from 2010 where they talk about how Interactions moved to Massachusetts in the year prior. http://www.boston.com/business/technology/innoeco/2010/07/interactions_banks_63_million.html The article includes a link back to that Inside Indiana Business press release I linked to earlier, snarkily noting, "Guess this 2006 plan to create 200-plus new jobs in Indiana didn't exactly work out."

  3. I live on the east side and I have read all your comments. a local paper just did an article on Washington square mall with just as many comments and concerns. I am not sure if they are still around, but there was an east side coalition with good intentions to do good things on the east side. And there is a facebook post that called my eastside indy with many old members of the eastside who voice concerns about the east side of the city. We need to come together and not just complain and moan, but come up with actual concrete solutions, because what Dal said is very very true- the eastside could be a goldmine in the right hands. But if anyone is going damn, and change things, it is us eastside residents

  4. Please go back re-read your economics text book and the fine print on the February 2014 CBO report. A minimum wage increase has never resulted in a net job loss...

  5. The GOP at the Statehouse is more interested in PR to keep their majority, than using it to get anything good actually done. The State continues its downward spiral.

ADVERTISEMENT