YORK, Pa., July 9, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Unilife Corporation ("Unilife" or "Company") (NASDAQ: UNIS, ASX: UNS), today announced that the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has granted the Company U.S. Patent No. 8,167,837 for the Unifill® ready-to-fill (prefilled) syringe.
This key Unilife patent, which provides Unilife and its customers with a long-term competitive advantage into 2026, covers Unilife's proprietary technology for the integration of automatic and operator-controlled needle retraction features within the barrel of a prefilled syringe.
Mr. Alan Shortall, CEO of Unilife Corporation, said, "The Unifill syringe is the world's first and only prefilled syringe with integrated safety features. This patented technology differentiates Unifill from every other prefilled syringe that is either on the market, or known by us to be in development. It is a key component of our strong and fast-expanding intellectual property (IP) portfolio. The patent further validates the uniqueness of Unilife's proprietary integrated retraction technology.
"The importance of this patent is evident from the many pharmaceutical companies seeking access to our best-in-class devices. Unilife's devices enable pharmaceutical companies to differentiate their injectable drugs from competitors' products, build market share and protect or increase their revenues.
"Expert legal opinion indicates that the unique safety, functionality and performance characteristics of our proprietary technologies may be utilized to extend the commercial lifecycles of drug-device combination products beyond the patent expiration of the drug itself. Because more than 70 biologics with combined annual revenues in excess of $70 billion are set to fall off the patent cliff between now and 2020, we have commenced discussions with a number of pharmaceutical customers with a view to enhancing and extending the commercial lifecycles of their blockbuster therapies.
"We continue to invest heavily in the diversification of our IP portfolio in order to expand and protect our position as a global leader for injectable drug delivery systems. Indeed, we expect our total number of patent filings to increase by two to three times in calendar year 2012 compared to 2011. These investments are building significant shareholder value and providing the impetus for our future growth by significantly expanding the scope of commercial opportunities available to Unilife," concluded Mr. Shortall.
Unilife has to-date been granted 60 patents worldwide for its device technologies and has filed more than one hundred additional patent applications that are expected to be granted at various times by the USPTO and other international patent organizations.
About Unilife Corporation
Unilife Corporation (NASDAQ:UNIS / ASX: UNS) is a U.S. based developer and commercial supplier of advanced drug delivery systems. Unilife collaborates with pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies seeking innovative, differentiated devices that can enable or enhance the delivery of injectable drugs and vaccines supplied in either a liquid stable or lyophilized form. The Unifill syringe, the world's first and only prefilled syringe with fully integrated safety features, sits at the leading edge of this diversified portfolio. In addition to prefilled and hypodermic safety syringes with automatic, user-controlled needle retraction, Unilife has other proprietary technology platforms including drug reconstitution delivery systems, auto-injectors, auto-infusion pump systems and specialized devices for targeted organ delivery. Unilife's global headquarters and state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities are located in York, PA. For more information on Unilife, please visit www.unilife.com
This press release contains forward-looking statements. All statements that address operating performance, events or developments that we expect or anticipate will occur in the future are forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are based on management's beliefs and assumptions and on information currently available to our management. Our management believes that these forward-looking statements are reasonable as and when made. However, you should not place undue reliance on any such forward-looking statements because such statements speak only as of the date when made. We do not undertake any obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law. In addition, forward-looking statements are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results, events and developments to differ materially from our historical experience and our present expectations or projections. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, those described in "Item 1A. Risk Factors" and elsewhere in our Annual Report on Form 10-K and those described from time to time in other reports which we file with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
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SOURCE Unilife Corporation