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AbbVie files patent suit against Boehringer's Humira biosimilar

AbbVie Inc. filed a patent lawsuit against Boehringer Ingelheim Corp. relating to its blockbuster drug Humira, FiercePharma reported Aug. 3.

The suit, filed in Delaware federal court on Aug. 2, reportedly alleges that Boehringer wants to "reap the rewards" of AbbVie's innovation on Humira. AbbVie claims that its patents are valid until 2022.

The patent infringement claim includes manufacturing and formulation processes, with AbbVie claiming that a potential biosimilar by Boehringer will infringe on 74 of the more than 100 patents it holds for the drug.

AbbVie stated that while the Biosimilar Price Competition and Innovation Act allows Boehringer to come to market with a copycat biologic, it does not allow patent infringement, FiercePharma reported.

Boehringer's Humira biosimilar is currently in phase 3 trials. Amgen Inc.'s Amjevita, also a Humira biosimilar, has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration but has not been launched because of a separate patent lawsuit by AbbVie.

Novartis AG's Sandoz unit, Biogen Inc. and Fujifilm Kyowa Kirin Biologics are some other companies with Humira biosimilars, while Merck & Co. Inc. and Coherus Biosciences have biosimilars under development.