Genzyme Patent for Kidney Disease Drug Hectorol Ruled Valid

Genzyme Corp. and Bone Care International Inc. won a U.S. judge’s ruling that their patent for the kidney disease drug Hectorol is valid and enforceable.

U.S. District Judge Robert M. Dow affirmed the patent’s validity in a 78-page ruling published yesterday. The companies, now part of Paris-based Sanofi, filed suit seeking that ruling in 2008 to prevent U.S.-based drugmakers Pentech Pharmaceuticals Inc. and its Cobrek Pharmaceuticals Inc. unit from making a competing generic version.

The case was tried before Dow in Chicago in October and November 2010.

An injectable drug, Hectorol is used to treat patients with end-stage kidney disease who are undergoing dialysis and suffering from hyperactivity in that part of the thyroid gland that regulates calcium and phosphorus levels.

Closely-held Pentech and Cobrek are based in the Chicago suburb of Rolling Meadows, Illinois. Citing their non-public status, an employee of the company who declined identify herself said the businesses declined to comment on Dow’s ruling.

The case is Bone Care International Inc. v. Pentech Pharmaceuticals Inc., 08cv1083, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois (Chicago).

To contact the reporter on this story: Andrew Harris in Chicago at aharris16@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at mhytha@bloomberg.net.

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