Jazz Pharmaceuticals Anticompetitive Agreements on Xyrem Class Action

In recent years, we’ve seen a number of antitrust cases where a pharmaceutical company with a lucrative drug is accused of conspiring with generics companies to keep generic versions of that drug off the market. This class action alleges that Jazz Pharmaceuticals, related Jazz companies, and a long list of other drug companies conspired to delay the introduction to the market of a generic version of the Jazz narcolepsy drug Xyrem.

The class for this action is all persons and entities in the US and its territories who indirectly bought, paid for, or gave full or partial reimbursement for the price of Xyrem, other than for resale, between June 17, 2017 until the effects of the alleged anticompetitive conduct ends.

According to the complaint, Xyrem (sodium oxybate) is a “blockbuster” drug that has brought in “over a billion dollars annually that accounted for over 70% of the company’s revenue.” This revenue, the complaint alleges would be “destroyed” by the emergence of generic versions of the drug: “Price competition from generic competitors would bring competitive market forces to bear and would drive … Xyrem prices down.”

How did Xyrem choose to counter this? The complaint claims that it pursued a “scheme that
included “obtaining invalid and unenforceable patents and improperly listing these patents in the FDA’s Orange Book, prosecuting sham litigation based on fraudulent, invalid, or unenforceable patents, abusing the REMS program, and filing sham citizen petitions.”

That isn’t all. The complaint alleges Jazz “entered into reverse settlement agreements” with a long list of generic makers, such as Roxane, Amneal, Ranbaxy, and Mallinckrodt, in which it promised to pay them if they delayed the entry of their Xyrem generics to the market.

The complaint claims that the agreements “effectively allocated the market” for the drug on a specific schedule, with the following provisions:

  • Xyrem would keep its monopoly of the market through the end of 2022.
  • Jazz would introduce an Authorized Generic (AG) on January 1, 2023 and share the profits from it with Roxane.
  • On July 1 of that same year, it would introduce other AGs and share those profits with other generic makers. On that date, too, Roxane would be allowed to introduce its generic.
  • On December 31, 2025, other generic makers would be allowed to introduce their versions of the drug.

Jazz has already boosted prices for Xyrem to very high levels. Since 2007, the price rises have amounted to an increase of 1,350%, the complaint says, so that “[f]or a patient taking a dosage in the middle of the effective range, the monthly cost of Xyrem exceeds $13,000.” The complaint says a study showed that this was “more than any other pharmaceutical company for price increases on a single drug.”

One of the reasons for antitrust laws is to keep monopolies from forcing consumers to pay more than they would in a free, truly competitive market.

Article Type: Lawsuit
Topic: News

Most Recent Case Event

Jazz Pharmaceuticals Anticompetitive Agreements on Xyrem Complaint

August 14, 2020

In recent years, we’ve seen a number of antitrust cases where a pharmaceutical company with a lucrative drug is accused of conspiring with generics companies to keep generic versions of that drug off the market. This class action alleges that Jazz Pharmaceuticals, related Jazz companies, and a long list of other drug companies conspired to delay the introduction to the market of a generic version of the Jazz narcolepsy drug Xyrem.

Jazz Pharmaceuticals Anticompetitive Agreements on Xyrem Complaint

Case Event History

Jazz Pharmaceuticals Anticompetitive Agreements on Xyrem Complaint

August 14, 2020

In recent years, we’ve seen a number of antitrust cases where a pharmaceutical company with a lucrative drug is accused of conspiring with generics companies to keep generic versions of that drug off the market. This class action alleges that Jazz Pharmaceuticals, related Jazz companies, and a long list of other drug companies conspired to delay the introduction to the market of a generic version of the Jazz narcolepsy drug Xyrem.

Jazz Pharmaceuticals Anticompetitive Agreements on Xyrem Complaint
Tags: Antitrust, Keeping Generics Off the Market, Pharmaceuticals