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Pharmaceutical

Pfizer''s Lipitor Patent Rejected

January 14, 2008
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Drug developer Pfizer Inc. said recently the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office rejected the company''s claim to a basic patent covering the blockbuster cholesterol drug Lipitor, but the treatment will remain protected throughout a lengthy appeals process, the Associated Press reported.

Generic drug developer Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd. lost a patent dispute with Pfizer in Canada last year, but then requested the U.S. patent office review Lipitor. Pfizer said the rejection was expected as part of the process and it will now file a response making its case for the patent, which is set to expire in 2010.

Lipitor is the world''s top-selling drug, with sales of $12.89 billion in 2006. The review process can take several years, Pfizer said, and the patent will remain valid and enforceable for the duration of the review.
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