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Teva Settles With Merck Over Cholesterol Drugs

BRIEF: Teva Settles With Merck Over Cholesterol Drugs [Globes, Tel Aviv, Israel]

From Globes (Tel Aviv) (July 11, 2011)

July 10--Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (Nasdaq: TEVA; TASE: TEVA) has reached a compromise with Merck & Co. Inc. (NYSE: MRK) and will not sell cholesterol drugs Vytorin and Zetia until 2017. The agreement was filed in a federal court in Newark, New Jersey and settles a patent lawsuit by Merck, "Bloomberg" reported.

Teva and Merck signed the agreement on Friday, in which Teva committed not to sell the cholesterol drugs before April 25 2017. The compromise ends two patent lawsuits bought by Merck against Teva in 2009 and 2010, to prevent marketing of generic versions of the drugs.

Zetia had annual sales of $2.3 billion in 2010, and Vytorin had annual sales of $2 billion.

Last week, the UK's "Financial Times" reported that Teva had sold $23 million of a generic version of Pfizer Inc.'s (NYSE: PFE) cholesterol treatment Lipitor in Britain. However, Pfizer is claiming that Teva has infringed its patent and has had an English High Court injunction issued prohibiting sell of the generic drug, until the court reconvenes to consider the matter on July 11.

On Friday Teva's share price rose 0.26 percent on Nasdaq to $49.47, giving a market cap of $44.18 billion.


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Posted: July 2011