Israel-based Teva said it had already launched its dry powder
inhaler, DuoResp Spiromax, in Britain on Monday - before the court
ruling - but the verdict minimized any risks associated with the
AstraZeneca said in a statement it disagreed with the ruling and
would seek leave to appeal.
Teva's version of the drug has already been launched in Germany,
Denmark and Portugal and the British court ruling will facilitate
its sale in other European markets, the Israeli company said on
A spokesman added the inhaler would be a "significant" product for
the company, but did not give any numbers.
Symbicort is AstraZeneca's third-biggest selling drug, with
worldwide sales of just under $1.9 billion in the first half of
While Teva's product uses the same active ingredients as Symbicort,
formoterol and budesonide, the inhalers differ in design.
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AstraZeneca's Turbuhaler device has been granted a patent protecting
it until 2019 in Europe and the company hopes this will help it
retain sales in the face of cheaper generics, since doctors may be
reluctant to switch patients to other devices.
(Reporting by Tova Cohen and Ben Hirschler; Editing by Pravin Char)
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