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Pharmacyclics LLC & Anr. v. Hetero Labs Limited & Ors.


Recently, in the case of Pharmacyclics LLC & Anr. (“Plaintiff”) v. Hetero Labs Limited & Ors. (“Defendant”), the Court restrained the Defendant from manufacturing and marketing of Ibrutinib, a patented drug to treat cancer, while allowing the Defendant to exhaust their existing stock upon filing details with the Court, given the importance of the drug.


The suit patent was, however, subsequently, invalidated by an order of Joint Controller of Patents & Designs (“Controller”), in a post-grant opposition proceeding initiated by Laurus Labs Ltd on the ground that its lacked novelty and inventive step. Accordingly, the Court ordered a stay on the injunction order passed against the Defendant. However, The Controller’s order was overturned by the Intellectual Property Appellate Board (IPAB) in an appeal filed by the Plaintiffs and suit patent was restored.


The Plaintiff, during the next hearing at the Court, relied on IPAB’s order upholding the suit patent’s validity, whereas the Defendant questioned the IPAB’s order on the ground that tenure of the Chairman of IPAB, who authored the order, had expired before he passed the order on September 19, 2020.


The Court, however, noted that the Hon’ble Supreme Court in the case of International Association for Protection of Intellectual Property v. Union of India had extended the tenure of the IPAB Chairman until December 31, 2020. Hence, the IPAB’s order was valid and the Court, following a detailed examination of chemical structures and prior art documents, restored the interim injunction order passed against the Defendant.


Judgement Docs can be accessed here, https://shorturl.at/yPU36


Pharmacyclics LLC & Anr. v. Hetero Labs Limited & Ors. [CS(COMM) 76/2021, Delhi High Court, Decision dated December 21, 2023]

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