GSK fined for stalling antidepressant generics

Pharmaceutical firms GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), Generics UK and Alpharma have collectively been fined £45 million by the UK Competition and Markets Authority for delaying generic competition of GSK’s blockbuster antidepressant Seroxat (paroxetine).

The regulator found that the companies entered illegal agreements between 2001 and 2004, whereby Generics UK and Alpharma agreed to hold off from introducing generic versions of paroxetine in exchange for large payouts and GSK dropping patent infringement lawsuits. GSK has been fined £38 million, Generics UK £6 million and Alpharma £1.5 million.

The suit is the latest in a series of such cases, as competition authorities in Europe and the US have cracked down on similar pay-for-delay agreements. While not automatically illegal, such deals tread a fine line between legitimate out-of-court settlements and anticompetitive behaviour.

Related Content

Objections raised to GSK pay-for-delay deals

19 April 2013 Business

news image

The UK Office of Fair Trading believes deals to delay generic drugs infringed competition laws

Teva fined $1.2bn in pay-for-delay case

1 June 2015 Business

news image

Company illegally blocked generic competition of sleep disorder drug, and settlement terms tighten up rules on anticompetitiv...

Most Commented

WHO clarifies glyphosate risks

23 May 2016 Business

news image

UN and WHO panel conclude the herbicide glyphosate is ‘unlikely’ to cause cancer at realistic exposure levels

Large HIV vaccine trial to launch in South Africa

24 May 2016 News and Analysis

news image

US funding agency will enlist 5400 people for HIV vaccine study in South Africa in November