Supreme Court Sends Pfizer Inc.-Cipla Ltd. Case Back to Patent Office
Published: Nov 29, 2012
In a landmark ruling, the Supreme Court, has sent back a case involving crucial renal cancer drug, Sunitinib (sold as Sutent by Pfizer) to the patent authority, according to a lawyer involved in the case. This implies that the patent authority will re-examine the case, while the domestic company, Cipla is expected to argue against granting of the patent to Pfizer, all over again. At the same time, the court has ruled in favour of Cipla, by lifting an injunction against it, which may pave the way for the launch of a generic version of the drug. Pfizer was granted a patent for kidney cancer drug Sutent in India in 2007. Significantly, Cipla filed a post-grant application and won the case in September this year, with the Patent Office rejecting the claims made by Pfizer over the drug, on grounds that the invention claimed in patent (Sutent ) did not involve an inventive step. Following this, Pfizer appealed in the Delhi high court which granted an injunction restraining Cipla from launching the drug. Last month, Cipla filed an appeal in the Supreme Court against the high court order.