Damages Gilead to pay Bristol Myers Squibb increased to $1.2 billion in US patent infringement trial over Yescarta

A federal judge increased to $1.2 billion the damages that Gilead Sciences must pay to Bristol Myers Squibb in a patent infringement case regarding the CAR-T cell therapy Yescarta (axicabtagene ciloleucel). US District Judge Philip Gutierrez said the judgment was entered against Gilead's Kite Pharma unit on its "counterclaims of non-infringement and invalidity."

Gutierrez said the $1.2 billion includes $778 million awarded by a federal jury in December, after finding that Yescarta infringed on a patent exclusively licensed by Bristol Myers' Juno Therapeutics division, plus enhanced damages of $389 million and a pre-judgment interest on the jury's verdict in the amount of $32.8 million.

In response to the ruling, Gilead said that "we furthermore strongly believe that the judgment is legally unsupportable and will be reversed," adding that "we look forward to addressing these issues on appeal."

Gilead gained Yescarta via the $11.9-billion purchase of Kite Pharma in 2017. Yescarta was approved by the FDA later that year for certain patients with large B-cell lymphoma.

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