In a blow to the pharmaceutical industry, a federal court judge allowed a new Maryland law to go into effect on Sunday that permits state officials to punish generic drug makers for price gouging.

The Association for Accessible Medicines, a trade group, had argued the law — which was enacted last May and is the first of its kind in the U.S. — was unconstitutional, unnecessarily vague, and might prompt some companies to halt the sale of their medicines in the state. But U.S. District Court Judge Marvin Garbis was not persuaded.

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