Impax Settles With Abbott, Fournier to Sell Generic TriLipix

Impax Laboratories Inc. (IPXL) said it settled patent litigation with Abbott Laboratories (ABT) and its Fournier Laboratories Ireland Ltd. unit, permitting Impax to sell a generic version of the cholesterol drug TriLipix as early as 2013.

Impax, based in Hayward, California, may sell delayed- release capsules of TriLipix starting July 15, 2013, “under certain circumstances in the settlement agreement” that weren’t spelled out in a regulatory filing today. Otherwise, Impax may offer generic versions in 45-milligram or 135-milligram doses on Jan. 1, 2014, the filing said.

TriLipix reduces cholesterol and fatty acids called triglycerides in the blood. The drug, whose chemical name is choline fenofibrate, is a delayed-release version of Abbott’s TriCor medicine. Sales of Trilipix and TriCor were $963 million in the U.S. in the first nine months of the year, Abbott said in an earnings statement yesterday.

The agreement “allows Abbott to obtain certainty for our product and avoid costly litigation around our patent,” said Scott Stoffel, a spokesman for Abbott Park, Illinois-based Abbott.

Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (TEVA), the world’s biggest generic-drug maker, plans to begin selling a generic version of TriCor in July under an earlier lawsuit settlement with Abbott.

The case is Abbott Laboratories v. Impax Laboratories, 10- cv-1322, U.S. District Court, District of New Jersey (Newark).

To contact the reporters on this story: David Voreacos in Newark at dvoreacos@bloomberg.net; Susan Decker in Washington at sdecker1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at mhytha@bloomberg.net; Michael Shepard at mshepard7@bloomberg.net

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