The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit tossed a $1.2 billion fine against Gilead Sciences after invalidating portions of a Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center patent licensed to a Bristol Myers Squibb subsidiary.
The patent was the basis for the previous ruling against Foster City, Calif.–based Gilead, which related to patent infringement claims associated with Yescarta, a CAR-T immunotherapy developed by Gilead’s Kite Pharma subsidiary. The Bristol Myers Squibb unit Juno Therapeutics had developed a similar treatment.
In a legal opinion representing a unanimous three-judge decision, Chief U.S. Circuit Judge Kimberly Moore reasoned that the portions of the Memorial Kettering Cancer Center patent lacked adequate details.
In 2019, a jury concluded that Kite Pharma had infringed on the patent and awarded the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center $778 million in damages.
Later, U.S. District Judge Philip Gutierrez increased the damages to $1.2 billion.
The case is titled Juno Therapeutics Inc. et al. v. Kite Pharma Inc.
“We are pleased with the Federal Circuit’s decision, which correctly found that Juno’s patent lacks adequate support and is invalid,” said Geoff Biegler, principal at Fish & Richardson, which represented Kite Pharma in the case.
Fish & Richardson, Munger Tolles & Olson LLP, in-house lawyers and appellate counsel at Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP worked collaboratively on behalf of Gilead in the case.
Gilead Sciences has experienced rapid growth in its CAR-T immunotherapy segment. In a Q2 earnings call, the company announced 39% sales growth year-over-year in its oncology CAR T-cell therapy product line.
In April, Gilead said that the $1.2 billion judgement was “legally unsupportable and will be reversed.” Bristol Myers Squibb had been seeking $1.5 billion in the patent infringement verdict.
Bristol Myers Squibb plans to seek a review of the most recent decision to invalidate the damages.
Filed Under: Oncology