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Oslo Court Orders Krka to Pay EUR 1.9M for Patent Infringement

Novo mesto, 23 April (STA) - The Commercial Court in Oslo, Norway, has ordered the Swedish subsidiary of Slovenian maker of generic drugs Krka to pay EUR 1.9m to the multinational AstraZeneca due to infringement of a patent on the active ingredient esomeprazole, Krka said on Monday.

Krka has claimed that the patent covers only esomeprazole with an optical purity of 99.8% or more, as AstraZeneca has limited its invention in all members of the European Patent Convention.

But the court in Oslo ruled that the scope of invention is broader in Norway, arguing that the patent covers any esomeprazole product with an optical purity above 98%.

Krka's product has an optical purity below 99.8% but above 98%, falling within the scope of the patent.

Krka Sverige was selling its esomeprazole products in Norway from October to December 2010, when it took the product off the market after it received an injunction from the Oslo Enforcement Court.

Krka said it would appeal against the first instance decision.