Santarus, Inc. v. Par Pharma., Inc., No. 10-1360 (Fed. Cir. 2012)Annotate this Case
Santarus is the exclusive licensee of patents on formulations of benzimidazole proton pump inhibitors, a class of chemical compounds that inhibit gastric acid secretion and help prevent and treat stomach acid-related diseases and disorders. Santarus provides the PPI product omeprazole in formulations covered by the Phillips patents, brand name Zegerid. Par filed an Abbreviated New Drug Application (ANDA) for FDA approval to sell a generic counterpart of the Santarus Zegerid products, invoking the Hatch-Waxman Act (the Drug Price Competition and Patent Term Restoration Act of 1984), which established Paragraph IV certification, 21 U.S.C. 355(j)(2)(A)(vii)(IV), whereby an entity that seeks to market a generic counterpart of a patented drug product or method of use, before the patent has expired, may challenge the patent before actually marketing the drug. The district court found that Par’s ANDA products infringe the patents, but found all asserted claims invalid on the ground of obviousness, 35 U.S.C 103 and found certain claims invalid on the ground of inadequate written description, 35 U.S.C. 112. The district court held that there was not inequitable conduct by the inventor, his assignee, or their counsel in procuring the patents. The Federal Circuit reversed with respect to obviousness, but otherwise affirmed.