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Ahold Sues Drug Companies

QUINCY, Mass. — Ahold USA has filed suit against the makers of the drug Solodyn, citing “substantial losses” resulting from the drug maker’s attempts to keep the top-selling acne treatment from being available in cheaper generic form.

In a suit filed this week in U.S. District Court in Boston, Ahold alleged that Medicis, the maker of Solodyn, engaged in several illegal tactics to extend its monopoly on its patent for the drug, including paying generic manufacturers to delay introductions. Generic drug manufacturers Impax, Lupin and Teva Pharmaceuticals are named as co-defendants in the suit.

Ahold filed the suit on behalf of itself and a class of plaintiffs that would include any purchaser of Solodyn since Feb. 3, 2009. Plaintiffs, the suit said, “paid artificially inflated prices for minocycline hydrochloride extended release tablets and were deprived of the benefits of earlier and more robust competition from cheaper generic versions.”


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Ahold, which operates Stop & Shop and Giant chains in the U.S., did not specify the amount of damages it was seeking.

Medicis, a division of Valeant Pharmaceuticals, has not yet responded to the compliant.

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