Kite Pharma ordered to pay Juno Therapeutics $752M in CAR-T drug infringement case

A federal jury Dec. 13 ordered Gilead Sciences subsidiary Kite Pharma to pay $752 million to Bristol-Myers Squibb subsidiary Juno Therapeutics for allegedly violating a patent when developing its CAR-T drug, Yescarta, according to MedCity News. 

In 2017, Kite received approval for Yescarta, designed to treat lymphoma. Juno then sued Kite, alleging it used research patented by Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and licensed by Juno to develop Yescarta. 

After two years of litigation, the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California in Los Angeles ordered Kite to pay $752 million to Juno and Memorial Sloan, declaring that it did violate the research patent Juno had licensed. 

The payment includes $585 million in damages as well as 27.6 percent of running royalty on sales of Yescarta, which totaled $264 million in 2018, according to MedCity News. 

Gilead acquired Kite for $11.9 billion in 2017. The drug giant told MedCity News in a statement Dec. 13: "We remain steadfast in our opinion that Sloan Kettering’s patent is infringed and is invalid. Given that Kite independently developed Yescarta and assumed all of the risk in its discovery and development, we do not believe Sloan Kettering and Juno are entitled to any level of damages."

An investment analyst told MedCity News that investors expect Gilead to divest Kite, and CEO Daniel O'Day reportedly said Gilead would have Kite operate as a separate business. 

Read the full article here

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