Gilead sues US, claims it illegally acquired Truvada patents

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Gilead Sciences has filed a lawsuit accusing the CDC of breaching several contracts to obtain patents for the intellectual property behind the drugmaker's Truvada HIV-prevention drug, STAT reported. 

In the suit, filed April 24, Gilead claims the CDC violated the terms of a 15-year-old collaboration between the two parties by failing to tell Gilead that it would obtain patents on the research that led to the development of Truvada. 

In 2004, Gilead and the CDC reached deals to collaborate on the research that led to the development of Truvada. The CDC obtained patents on the intellectual property more than a decade later, STAT reported. 

Gilead now argues that it wasn't given a chance to invalidate the patents in court and change its drug application with the FDA to market Truvada, which was approved for HIV prevention in 2012. 

"The government deliberately took actions that allowed it to obtain invalid and/or unenforceable patents," the lawsuit said. 

The lawsuit is the latest action in a lengthy legal battle between Gilead and the CDC over the patent rights on HIV prevention research, STAT reported. 

The CDC owns four intellectual property patents on HIV research, but Gilead claims the patents should be invalidated because other researchers came up with the idea to use antiretroviral drugs to prevent HIV before the CDC claims it did. 

The CDC has a lawsuit filed against Gilead claiming the drugmaker infringed on the patents and refused to reach a licensing deal. 

The Patent Trial and Appeals Board ruled in February that Gilead failed to demonstrate it was likely to win its arguments to overturn the patents. 

AIDS activists have been pushing for the CDC to collect royalties from Gilead so the government can use the money to fund HIV prevention and treatment. 

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