Regulatory Guidance

Allergan loses Supreme Court fight to shield Restasis patents with Native American tribe

Apr 15, 2019

The U.S. Supreme Court has rejected Allergan’s attempt to protect drug patents by transferring them a Native American tribe. 

In 2017, Allergan took the unconventional step of transferring patents for its top-selling dry eye drug, Restasis, to the Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe in New York. Under the agreement, the tribe then licensed the patents back to Allergan for up to $15 million in annual royalties.  

Allergan has since argued that the tribe’s sovereign status under federal law shields the Restasis patents from review by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. But this week, the Supreme Court upheld a 2016 decision by the federal agency to invalidate Allergen’s patents. 

Both Mylan and Teva Pharmaceuticals have already submitted generic versions of the drug for approval. 

Read the full Reuters report.