WASHINGTON Feb 6 Pfizer Inc, the world's largest drugmaker, has beaten back generic competition for the pain medicine Lyrica, its biggest product, with a U.S. appeals court ruling that competing generic products would infringe on the company's patents.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, which handles all patent appeals, ruled on Thursday that Teva Pharmaceuticals USA Inc, Lupin Ltd, Actavis Inc and other generic competitors had infringed on Pfizer's patents.
The decision upholds a ruling by the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware that said that the generic versions may not be sold.
Lyrica, which is approved to treat neuropathic pain caused by diabetes, shingles and other conditions, is Pfizer's biggest product, with global sales in 2013 of $4.6 billion. It had U.S. sales in 2013 of $1.96 billion.
Pfizer shares were up 0.5 percent at $30.81 in midday trading on the New York Stock Exchange.