Apr 5, 2019

Two pharma giants are suing each other over their migraine drug

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Amgen and Novartis jointly developed and sold the first FDA-approved drug to prevent migraines, which hit the market last year. But now their alliance is crumbling and they're suing each other.

The big picture: Everyone is so mad. These pharma giants are throwing every legal punch possible because there is so much money at stake.

  • Because Aimovig was the first in this class of migraine drugs to get FDA approval, it got the upper hand and controls 53% of the market.
  • U.S. sales of Aimovig were $119 million in 2018, but Wall Street analysts think sales could hit almost $2 billion by 2025.

The intrigue: Everything revolves around the contracts that Amgen and Novartis signed, which outlined how they would collaborate on research and marketing for Aimovig.

  • Amgen terminated the contracts on April 2, alleging a subsidiary of Novartis violated the terms by helping another company, Alder BioPharmaceuticals, make a competing migraine drug. Novartis admitted this after the fact, yet said it would still help Alder for another 5 years, according to Amgen's lawsuit.
  • Novartis denies the claims, arguing it didn't significantly breach their agreements because Alder's pending product isn't a true competitor. Instead, Novartis asserted Amgen is inappropriately ending the partnership "to keep the Aimovig profits for itself" and before Novartis "has come close to earning a return on its investment."

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NASCAR driver Ryan Newman hospitalized after fiery Daytona 500 crash

Ryan Newman, driver of the #6 Koch Industries Ford, crashes and flips during the NASCAR Cup Series 62nd Annual Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida, on Monday. Photo: Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images

Racing driver Ryan Newman was hospitalized in a serious condition with non-life threatening injuries after his car crashed at the Daytona 500 on Monday, NASCAR said in a statement.

The big picture: The 42-year-old was leading the final lap of the race, won by Denny Hamlin, when his car flipped in the fiery crash. President Trump tweeted after the crash, "Praying for Ryan Newman, a great and brave @NASCARdriver!"

Go deeper: Trump takes presidential limousine for lap at Daytona 500

Bolton indicates more Ukraine details if book prevails WH "censorship"

Former National Security Adviser John Bolton on stage at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, on Monday. Photo: Melissa Sue Gerrits/Getty Images

Former National Security Adviser John Bolton said during a talk at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina he hopes his new book is "not suppressed" by the White House, according to journalists present in the room.

This is an effort to write history and I did it the best I can. We'll have to see what comes out of the censorship."
Bolton's comments, per Bloomberg and the New York Times

There are warning signs that Nevada could be Iowa all over again

Former Sen. Harry Reid (D) lines up to cast an early vote for the upcoming Nevada Democratic presidential caucus. Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

The alarms are increasingly sounding over Nevada's Democratic caucus, which is just five days away.

Why it matters: Similar issues to the ones that plagued Iowa's caucus seem to be rearing their ugly heads, the WashPost reports.