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US: AstraZeneca makes history in pay-for-delay win

 |  December 7, 2014

UK pharmaceutical conglomerate AstraZeneca secured a landmark ruling last Friday when a jury in federal court found the firm did not harm competition through a pay-for-delay scheme with India-based generics firm Ranbaxy.

According to reports, while the jury found that AstraZeneca had made unjustified payments to Ranbaxy to delay the release of a generic form of a competitive drug, the jury said those payments were not unreasonably anticompetitive because no competing company had the regulatory clearance to sell that generic drug.

The case was the first pay-for-delay suit since the US Supreme Court sided with the Federal Trade Commission in ruling that such agreements could be deemed anticompetitive.

Dozens of drugstore chains, wholesalers and potentially hundreds of thousands of class members had sued AstraZeneca for violating antitrust law when it paid Ranbaxy to delay the release of the generic, cheaper form of Nexium. AstraZeneca reportedly faced up to $10 billion in fines.

Full content: Bloomberg

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