J&J Loses Current Round In Drug Eluting Stent Patent Lawsuit With Medtronic, Abbott and Boston Scientific


A judge has ruled that J&J’s case against companies it claims infringed its patent protection is invalid, because the patents weren’t adequately described. J&J plans to appeal.


To cut a long story short, J&J’s Cypher stent, the first drug-eluting stent introduced into the U.S., is coated with a compound called sirolimus (also called rapamycin and rapamune), the patents for which are held by Pfizer Inc.’s Wyeth subsidiary. Medtronic, Abbott and Boston Scientific subsequently launched their own drug eluting stents, coated in other drugs, which J&J claim are merely analogs of sirolimus and as such covered by the original patent.

Medtronic’s stent, called Endeavor, is coated with zotarolimus. Abbotts, Xience V stent is coated with everolimus. Boston’s Promus Stent is a licenced version of Abbott’s device, hence the company’s inclusion in the lawsuit.

According to a report on massdevice, Judge Joel Pisano of the U.S. District Court for New Jersey ultimately invalidated Wyeth’s patents on the grounds that they didn’t meet description requirements. In January of last year, Judge Susan Robinson of the U.S. District Court for Delaware also ruled in favour of Boston Scientific’s claim that J&J’s sirolimus patent doesn’t apply to everolimus finding that one of the patents wasn’t specific enough, in describing exactly which drug formulations it covered, to be valid, because the patent didn’t include a written description of at least one example of such a formulation.

Source: massdevice, Boston Scientific