Weil, Gotshal & Manges’s Matt Powers has taken his lumps in the press for his unsuccessful defense of Microsoft in the Tyler, Texas, trial that resulted in a $290 million judgment against the software company — and a finding by Judge Leonard Davis that Powers made inappropriate arguments at trial. But on Wednesday, he and Weil partner Nick Barzoukas stepped into the winner’s circle when Trenton, N.J., federal district court Judge Garrett Brown Jr. upheld Merck’s patent for its best-selling product, the asthma and allergy drug Singulair. Here’s Brown’s opinion.
Two years ago, a Merck subsidiary sued the generic drug manufacturer Teva Pharmaceuticals, which was planning to introduce a copycat of Singulair, for patent infringement. At a four-day bench trial in February, Teva’s lawyers — Daryl Wiesen of Goodwin Procter and Ralph Gabric of Brinks Hofer Gilson & Lione — argued that Merck’s patent was obvious and that it was obtained through inequitable conduct. But Brown, chief judge for the district of New Jersey, rejected those arguments. He found Teva had infringed Merck’s patent and barred Teva from introducing a generic version of Singulair before the expiration of Merck’s patent in 2012.
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