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n what may be a first, a patient has filed a lawsuit accusing a drug maker of hiding behind a mandated safety program to thwart generic competition. The company, in this case, is Celgene.

The lawsuit, which was filed by a cancer patient and consumer advocate named David Mitchell, accused the biotech of exploiting a Food and Drug Administration program that is designed to boost safety. Typically such a program, known as a Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy, requires drug makers to develop a plan to educate physicians and monitor distribution.

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  • Unfortunately Mr. Mitchell, a 66 year old patient with multiple myeloma has a much larger problem than restraint of competition. Even if Mylan were to produce a valid BE study tomorrow, the court has ruled that the Revlimid patent is valid until 2022, and unfortunately the best case scenario for MM life expectancy is 62 months.

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