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Supreme Court to Hear Appeal of Multiple Sclerosis Drug Case

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NEW YORK — The Supreme Court on Monday agreed to hear an appeal from Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, a decision that could conceivably delay generic competition to Teva’s big-selling multiple sclerosis drug Copaxone.

An appeals court last July had invalidated a patent that would have protected Copaxone until September 2015. Without that protection, the drug could face competition from lower-priced copies as early as two months from now.

While Teva, an Israeli company, is the world’s largest manufacturer of generic drugs, the branded product Copaxone accounts for about 20 percent of its revenue and around half of its profit. Sales of Copaxone reached $4.3 billion last year, of which $3.2 billion came from the United States.

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