Pharmacies Accuse Pfizer of Antitrust Over Lipitor

By: AP Email
By: AP Email

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - A group of California pharmacies are
accusing Pfizer Inc. and a generic drug maker of conspiring to keep
the price of cholesterol-fighting Lipitor artificially high.

Eleven pharmacies filed a lawsuit Monday in San Francisco
federal court alleging antitrust violations. The lawsuit alleges
that Pfizer and India-based Ranbaxy Laboratories illegally delayed
the U.S. marketing of generic alternatives to Lipitor, the world's
best-selling pharmaceutical.

In 2008, the two companies settled a patent dispute by agreeing
to divide the global market for the drug. Ranbaxy allowed Pfizer to
exclusively control the U.S. market until this month, even though
key patents had expired and opened the way for generic competition.

The companies contend the settlement was legal.

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