U.S. Supreme Court again rebuffs Bristol Myers’ appeal in Gilead …

  • Summary
  • Companies
  • Law firms
  • Bristol Myers’ Juno asked court to reconsider denial in light of related Amgen case
  • Juno previously won $1.2 billion from Gilead subsidiary in dispute

(Reuters) – A Bristol Myers Squibb Co subsidiary on Monday lost a renewed bid for the U.S. Supreme Court to hear its appeal of a 2021 decision that invalidated its cancer-drug patent and overturned a $1.2 billion infringement award it won against Gilead Sciences Inc’s Kite Pharma.

The dispute between Bristol Myers’ Juno Therapeutics Inc and Kite Pharma centers on Kite’s drug Yescarta, a biologic medication for treating lymphoma that reprograms the body’s immune cells to recognize and attack cancer cells. Worldwide sales of Yescarta reached nearly $700 million in 2021.

Juno and the Sloan Kettering Institute for Cancer Research sued Kite in 2017 in federal court in Los Angeles, accusing it of copying technology that the institute licenses to Juno. A jury awarded the plaintiffs $778 million in damages, which a judge later increased to $1.2 billion.

The patent-focused U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit threw out the award in 2021, determining that the patent at issue lacked a sufficient written description.

Juno and Sloan Kettering told the Supreme Court that the Federal Circuit’s decision to invalidate the patent and other rulings against biologic-drug patents have been “devastating for innovation.”

The Supreme Court rejected Juno and Sloan Kettering’s first bid for review in November, three days after the justices agreed to consider Amgen Inc’s request to revive patents on its biologic cholesterol drug Repatha.

The high court on Monday rejected Juno and Sloan Kettering’s request to rehear their case in light of the Amgen case. Juno and Sloan Kettering had told the justices that the issues in the cases are “tightly related.”

A Bristol Myers spokesperson said Monday that the company “pursued this petition to restore the proper balance to our innovation economy” and “will continue to work to correct this imbalance and the erroneous standard that has been set by the Federal Circuit.”

A spokesperson for Kite said the company was pleased with the decision to finalize the denial of Juno’s petition.

The case is Juno Therapeutics Inc v. Kite Pharma Inc, U.S. Supreme Court, No. 21-1566.

For Juno: Gregory Castanias of Jones Day

For Kite: Joshua Rosenkranz of Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe

(NOTE: This story has been updated with comment from Kite.)

Read more:

U.S. Supreme Court rejects Bristol Myers cancer-drug patent fight with Gilead

Gilead Sciences wins reversal of $1.2 bln award in patent case with Bristol Myers

U.S. Supreme Court to hear Amgen bid to revive cholesterol drug patents

Reporting by Blake Brittain in Washington

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

Blake Brittain

Thomson Reuters

Blake Brittain reports on intellectual property law, including patents, trademarks, copyrights and trade secrets. Reach him at blake.brittain@thomsonreuters.com

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