Amarin stock tanks nearly 70% after losing a patent battle over its key heart drug

FILE PHOTO: A view shows the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) headquarters in Silver Spring, Maryland August 14, 2012. REUTERS/Jason Reed/File Photo


Shares of Amarin plunged nearly 70% Tuesday, falling to as low as $4.16 per share from Monday's close of $13.58 per share after the company lost a key patent battle over its premiere drug, Vascepa.

The United States District Court of Nevada on Monday ruled that the company's patent claims for Vascepa, a heart drug that uses fish oil to lower triglycerides, are invalid. The ruling could open the door for other drugmakers to make generic versions of the key drug. Advertisement

Amarin said it would appeal the decision. Vascepa accounted for nearly all of the company's nearly $430 million in revenue last year, according to Bloomberg. The US Food and Drug Administration has yet to approve any generic versions of Vascepa.

"Amarin strongly disagrees with the ruling and will vigorously pursue all available remedies, including an appeal of the Court's decision and a preliminary injunction pending appeal to, if an ANDA is approved by FDA, prevent launch of generic versions of Vascepa in the United States," said Amarin CEO John Thero in a statement.

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He continued: "as we work to take all legal actions necessary to defend and protect our intellectual property, we will continue to press forward with our educational and promotional efforts for Vascepa in treating indicated patients at high risk of cardiovascular events, such as heart attack and stroke," Thero said.

In addition to the battle over Vascepa, Amarin has had its own share of woes related to the coronavirus pandemic. Earlier this month, the company suspended all in-person interactions of its sales representatives, Reuters reported. Amarin has lost 37% year-to-date through Monday's close. Including Tuesday's decline, it's down more than 80%. Advertisement

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