Allergan settles with one of four companies contesting Restasis patent

The Allergan logo is seen in this photo illustration November 23, 2015. To match special report USA-FDA/CASES REUTERS/Thomas White/Illustration/File Photo

(Reuters) - Allergan Plc said on Thursday it reached a settlement with InnoPharma Inc, one of the four generic drugmakers challenging the patents for its dry eye medication Restasis in federal court.

Mylan NV, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd and Akorn Inc are still contesting those patents in U.S. District Court in Marshall, Texas.

The three companies did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the announcement.

As part of the settlement, Allergan said InnoPharma could begin selling a generic version of Restasis on Feb. 24, 2024, or possibly earlier, about six months ahead of the scheduled expirations of the patents.

The company also said it may allow InnoPharma to sell an authorized generic version of the drug supplied by Allergan beginning Aug. 28, 2024.

Last month, Allergan struck a controversial deal with a Native American tribe in order to shield a separate review of the Restasis patents by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

Allergan transferred the patents to New York’s Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe, which agreed to exclusively license them back to the company in exchange for ongoing payments. The tribe and Allergan argue that the patents are not subject to the trademark office’s review because of the tribe’s sovereign immunity.

U.S. lawmakers from both parties have criticized the maneuver. Democratic U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill drafted a bill in response to the move and a U.S. House of Representatives committee is investigating the deal.

Reporting by Michael Erman; editing by Grant McCool