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Zimmer, peer sued over arthritic-knee treatments

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Genzyme Corp., the drugmaker bought by Sanofi-Aventis SA this month, sued Zimmer Holdings Inc. and Anika Therapeutics Inc. alleging the companies’ treatments for arthritic knee pain infringe a patent.

Genzyme is seeking to block sales of Anika’s Monovisc drug as well as a treatment made by Seikagaku Corp. and distributed by Zimmer called Gel-One, according to two patent-infringement lawsuits filed Tuesday in federal court in Boston. Genzyme, based in Cambridge, Mass., also is seeking cash compensation.

The company filed the lawsuits the same day it was issued the patent for a method of treating a knee joint with a single injection of hyaluronic acid, which the company markets as Synvisc-One, according to the complaint. Sales of Synvisc-One and of Synvisc, a three-injection drug, rose 20 percent to $393 million last year, Genzyme said in its annual report.

Synvisc-One was the only single-injection treatment approved by U.S. regulators until Gel-One was approved March 22, according to the complaint against Warsaw-based Zimmer. Tokyo-based Seikagaku also was named in the Zimmer lawsuit.

Anika, based in Bedford, Mass., sells Monovisc in Europe, Turkey and Canada, and is seeking approval to sell it in the United States. Anika has “already begun advertising for field sales representatives,” Genzyme said in that complaint.

Zimmer spokesman Garry Clark said the company doesn’t comment on pending litigation. Officials with Anika didn’t immediately return messages seeking comment.

Paris-based Sanofi bought Genzyme, the world’s largest maker of medicines for rare genetic disorders, for at least $20.1 billion.

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  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."

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  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.

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