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Alimta lung cancer drug patent has been rejected

Eli Lilly and Co is a U.S. global pharmaceutical company with offices in 18 countries.

A federal patent review board rejected on Thursday a challenge to a patent covering Eli Lilly’s Alimta drug which treats some lung cancers and mesothelioma.

The U.S. Patent Trial and Appeal Board failed to show it that more likely than 22 claims underlying the Lilly patent could not be patented. Lilly has said it begins losing patent protection in 2021.

Michael Harrington, Lilly’s general counsel, in a statement said the company was pleased with the ruling, and that its “significant scientific research” justified patent protection, “which has been confirmed in every validity challenge to date.”

Lilly has faced several legal challenges to its right to avoid generic competition for Alimta, whose chemical name is pemetrexed.

It has said its vitamin regimen patents provide patent protection for Alimta through June 2021 in Japan and large European countries, and through May 2022 in the United States.

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