On December 5, 2014, Venable scored an important victory in federal court on behalf of Ranbaxy in the first test of what limits may be placed on reverse payment antitrust deals among drugmakers to protect steady streams of revenue on popular drugs. The case against AstraZeneca and Ranbaxy challenged a 2008 settlement of a patent lawsuit that stalled sales of a cheaper version of Nexium in the U.S. until AstraZeneca's patents expired last May. The case is the first reverse payment suit to go to trial since the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in June 2013 that the Hatch-Waxman Act settlements could be challenged under federal antitrust law.
The Venable trial team was led by Doug Baldridge and included partners Lisa Jose Fales, Danielle R. Foley, associates Vincent Verrocchio, Paul Feinstein, Sarah Choi and Molly Cusson with Marta Markowska and Jeanne Mooney.
The victory was widely covered in over 50 publications in the U.S. and internationally including the Wall Street Journal, Law360, Reuters, Boston Business Journal, Modern Healthcare, The Pharma Letter, Financial Times, Alliance News, and Bloomberg which was republished in multiple publications including the Washington Post, Philadelphia Inquirer, and Chicago Tribune among others. Click the link to view a list of publications.
"We're truly extremely grateful to this jury. This is a complicated and not necessarily interesting matter. They were just so attentive and did just such a terrific job in getting it right," Baldridge told the Boston Business Journal. Speaking with Modern Healthcare, Baldridge said settlements, such as the type between AstraZeneca and Ranbaxy, are important because "people have patents on these products and these patent laws and Hatch Waxman exclusivity are a reward for spending an enormous amount of money and time for developing drugs that change all of our lives."
"The Venable team and Ranbaxy are gratified that our jury system worked effectively," Fales told Law360 following the jury's decision.
Wall Street Journal and Law360 continued their coverage of the landmark victory with Law360 noting it in its "Legal Lions" column of top wins over the past year.