One of Allergan’s blockbuster drugs was dealt a major legal blow image

Business Insider, October 16, 2017
Lydia Ramsey, quoting Rachel E. Sachs (Academic Fellow Alumna)

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Native American tribes, along with institutions like universities, have sovereign immunity that protects patents from certain challenges to their validity. 

The tribe, in the Allergan press release, said it viewed the agreement as a way to diversify its income.

"We realize that we cannot depend solely on casino revenues and, in order for us to be self-reliant, we must enter into diverse business sectors to address the chronically unmet needs of the Akwesasne community; such as housing, employment, education, healthcare, cultural and language preservation," the tribe's council said in the release. 

Dale White, general counsel for the tribe, told CNBC's Meg Tirrell in September that he'd be interested in doing similar deals, asking Tirrell if she would put his phone number in an article. 

But outside the two parties involved in the deal, the move almost immediately sparked a negative reaction. "Anyone who cares about drug pricing should be very, very concerned about the potential impact of Allergan’s actions here," Rachel Sachs, a professor of law at Washington University in St. Louis wrote in a blog post.

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fda health care finance health law policy pharmaceuticals rachel sachs