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Norway court favours Ranbaxy on atorvastatin

Our Bureau

New Delhi , Aug. 30

Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd (RLL) on Wednesday announced that a Norwegian court had handed down a favourable decision for Ranbaxy in its case against Pfizer, involving two patents on atorvastatin in Norway. Atorvastatin is a cholesterol-lowering drug, which is marketed by Pfizer as Lipitor.

According to a company statement, the Oslo City Court sided with Ranbaxy by finding non-infringement of two of Pfizer's Norwegian patents covering particular intermediate compounds. Earlier in November 2005, the Norwegian Court had found Ranbaxy's atorvastatin product not to infringe one of Pfizer's process patents but to infringe another of Pfizer's patents covering a particular intermediate compound.

Ranbaxy has already appealed to the Norwegian Court of Appeals against the negative judgment on the one remaining intermediate compound patent.

"This is a most important decision for Ranbaxy, as it significantly validates our position regarding the atorvastatin patents," said Mr Jay Deshmukh, Senior Vice-President, Global Intellectual Property for RLL. "We will continue to actively pursue all of our options in Norway and other markets in order to bring affordable atorvastatin to patients around the world."

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