Takeda Pharm. Co., Ltd. v. Zydus Pharm. USA, Inc., No. 13-1406 (Fed. Cir. 2014)Annotate this Case
Takeda owns patents that claim the formulation for the brand-name drug Prevacid® SoluTab,™ which contains the active ingredient lansoprazole, a proton pump inhibitor used to treat acid reflux. It is the only proton pump inhibitor available as an orally disintegrable tablet. A patient allows the tablet to disintegrate in his mouth, leaving behind thousands of granules which the patient swallows. The stated objective of the 994 patent is a formulation with granules small enough to avoid a feeling of roughness in the patient’s mouth upon disintegration. In 2010, Zydus filed an abbreviated new drug application (ANDA) with the FDA, seeking to manufacture a generic version of Prevacid® SoluTab.™ Takeda filed suit, alleging that the ANDA product infringed claims of several patents. Only claim 1 of the 994 patent remains at issue. Zydus counterclaimed, alleging that claim 1 was invalid for failure to comply with 35 U.S.C. 112. The district court construed the claim term “fine granules having an average particle diameter of 400 μm or less,” accepting Takeda’s argument that the term should be construed to include a deviation of ±10%, based on a “universally accepted” 10% standard of error for particle size measurements. The Federal Circuit reversed the finding of infringement and found no invalidity.