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Allergan transfers Restasis patent to Mohawk tribe to deter challenges from generics

BMJ 2017; 358 doi: (Published 13 September 2017) Cite this as: BMJ 2017;358:j4280
  1. Owen Dyer

The Dublin based drug maker Allergan is transferring the patents for its dry eye treatment Restasis (ciclosporin ophthalmic emulsion) to the Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe, hoping that the native people’s sovereign status under US law will enable them to fight off patent challenges from generic makers.

The Mohawks, who live in upstate New York near the Canadian border, will immediately grant exclusive licenses for Restasis back to Allergan and will file a motion seeking to dismiss an inter partes review of the drug’s patent currently pending before the federal Patent Trial and Appeal Board.

This expedited form of patent review, available since 2011, has been called a form of “double jeopardy” by Allergan, which is already defending its Restasis patent in a Texas federal court against Mylan, Pfizer, and Teva …

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