DUBLIN, Ireland and BRIDGEWATER, N.J., Jan. 25, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Amarin Corporation plc (NASDAQ:AMRN), announced today an expansion of the scope of its VASCEPA® (icosapent ethyl) cardiovascular (CV) risk reduction patent infringement lawsuit against Hikma Pharmaceuticals PLC to include a health care insurance provider in the United States, Health Net, LLC. The lawsuit was filed in the United States District Court in Delaware. A copy of the amended complaint is available through the FAQ section of the Amarin investor relations website.
Multiple healthcare insurance providers and managed care enterprises have respected Amarin’s patent rights. As detailed in the complaint, Health Net is not among them. Through insurance coverage and economic incentives Amarin alleges that Health Net has actively induced pharmacies to dispense, and patients to use, Hikma generic icosapent ethyl capsules in infringement of U.S. Patent Nos. 9,700,537 (Composition for preventing the occurrence of cardiovascular event in multiple risk patient), 8,642,077 (Stable pharmaceutical composition and methods of using same), and 10,568,861 (Methods of reducing the risk of a cardiovascular event in a subject at risk for cardiovascular disease).
Amarin alleges that Health Net, like Hikma, understands that the vast majority of VASCEPA prescriptions are for use in CV risk reduction, that Hikma does not have an FDA approved indication for that use and that inducement for such use would infringe the subject patents. The Hikma generic icosapent ethyl product has the benefit of court judgments but only with respect to patents related to an indication currently representing no more than 7% of VASCEPA prescriptions in the United States: for use as an adjunct to diet to lower triglyceride levels in adult patients with severely high (≥500 mg/dL) triglyceride levels. In November 2020, Hikma began to market and sell its generic version of VASCEPA, but in limited supply due to significant and continuing supply constraints.
In the complaint, Amarin is seeking remedies including a permanent injunction against the unlawful inducement by Hikma and Health Net of infringing uses of the Hikma generic product, i.e., uses to reduce CV risk as detailed in the patents, and monetary damages in an amount sufficient to compensate Amarin for such infringement.
Amarin is continually considering its legal options against parties similarly situated to Health Net and Hikma and acting in concert with either by making or selling any drug product or component thereof covered by the subject patents, or inducing others to do the same.
“The patents at issue in this litigation reflect inventions heralded by the medical community as among the most significant advances in preventative cardiovascular care since statin therapy,” stated John Thero, president and chief executive officer of Amarin. “As a pioneering pharmaceutical company with over a decade of effort invested to bring these inventions to patients, Amarin plans to pursue this litigation vigorously. Proceeds from Amarin’s sale of VASCEPA are critical to help continue funding the education of patients, caregivers, and health care providers about the landmark REDUCE-IT® cardiovascular outcomes trial of VASCEPA and the associated cardiovascular risk reduction indication that FDA approved a little over one year ago.”
Amarin Corporation plc is a rapidly growing, innovative pharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing therapeutics to cost-effectively improve cardiovascular health. Amarin’s lead product, VASCEPA® (icosapent ethyl), is available by prescription in the United States, Canada, Lebanon and the United Arab Emirates. VASCEPA is not yet approved and available in any other countries. Amarin, on its own or together with its commercial partners in select geographies, is pursuing additional regulatory approvals for VASCEPA in China, Europe and the Middle East. For more information about Amarin, visit www.amarincorp.com.
REDUCE-IT was a global cardiovascular outcomes study designed to evaluate the effect of VASCEPA in adult patients with LDL-C controlled to between 41-100 mg/dL (median baseline 75 mg/dL) by statin therapy and various cardiovascular risk factors including persistent elevated triglycerides between 135-499 mg/dL (median baseline 216 mg/dL) and either established cardiovascular disease (secondary prevention cohort) or diabetes mellitus and at least one other cardiovascular risk factor (primary prevention cohort).
REDUCE-IT, conducted over seven years and completed in 2018, followed 8,179 patients at over 400 clinical sites in 11 countries with the largest number of sites located within the United States. REDUCE-IT was conducted based on a special protocol assessment agreement with FDA. The design of the REDUCE-IT study was published in March 2017 in Clinical Cardiology.1 The primary results of REDUCE-IT were published in The New England Journal of Medicine in November 2018.2 The total events results of REDUCE-IT were published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology in March 2019.3 These and other publications can be found in the R&D section on the company’s website at www.amarincorp.com.
About VASCEPA® (icosapent ethyl) Capsules
VASCEPA (icosapent ethyl) capsules are the first-and-only prescription treatment approved by the U.S. FDA comprised solely of the active ingredient, icosapent ethyl (IPE), a unique form of eicosapentaenoic acid. VASCEPA was launched in the United States in January 2020 as the first and only drug approved by the U.S. FDA for treatment of the studied high-risk patients with persistent cardiovascular risk after statin therapy. VASCEPA was initially launched in the United States in 2013 based on the drug’s initial FDA approved indication for use as an adjunct therapy to diet to reduce triglyceride levels in adult patients with severe (≥500 mg/dL) hypertriglyceridemia. Since launch, VASCEPA has been prescribed over ten million times. VASCEPA is covered by most major medical insurance plans.
Indications and Limitation of Use
VASCEPA is indicated:
- As an adjunct to maximally tolerated statin therapy to reduce the risk of myocardial infarction, stroke, coronary revascularization and unstable angina requiring hospitalization in adult patients with elevated triglyceride (TG) levels (≥ 150 mg/dL) and
- established cardiovascular disease or
- diabetes mellitus and two or more additional risk factors for cardiovascular disease.
- As an adjunct to diet to reduce TG levels in adult patients with severe (≥ 500 mg/dL) hypertriglyceridemia.
The effect of VASCEPA on the risk for pancreatitis in patients with severe hypertriglyceridemia has not been determined.
Important Safety Information
- VASCEPA is contraindicated in patients with known hypersensitivity (e.g., anaphylactic reaction) to VASCEPA or any of its components.
- VASCEPA was associated with an increased risk (3% vs 2%) of atrial fibrillation or atrial flutter requiring hospitalization in a double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. The incidence of atrial fibrillation was greater in patients with a previous history of atrial fibrillation or atrial flutter.
- It is not known whether patients with allergies to fish and/or shellfish are at an increased risk of an allergic reaction to VASCEPA. Patients with such allergies should discontinue VASCEPA if any reactions occur.
- VASCEPA was associated with an increased risk (12% vs 10%) of bleeding in a double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. The incidence of bleeding was greater in patients receiving concomitant antithrombotic medications, such as aspirin, clopidogrel or warfarin.
- Common adverse reactions in the cardiovascular outcomes trial (incidence ≥3% and ≥1% more frequent than placebo): musculoskeletal pain (4% vs 3%), peripheral edema (7% vs 5%), constipation (5% vs 4%), gout (4% vs 3%), and atrial fibrillation (5% vs 4%).
- Common adverse reactions in the hypertriglyceridemia trials (incidence >1% more frequent than placebo): arthralgia (2% vs 1%) and oropharyngeal pain (1% vs 0.3%).
- Adverse events may be reported by calling 1-855-VASCEPA or the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
- Patients receiving VASCEPA and concomitant anticoagulants and/or anti-platelet agents should be monitored for bleeding.
Key clinical effects of VASCEPA on major adverse cardiovascular events are included in the Clinical Studies section of the prescribing information for VASCEPA as set forth below:
Effect of VASCEPA on Time to First Occurrence of Cardiovascular Events in Patients with
Elevated Triglyceride levels and Other Risk Factors for Cardiovascular Disease in REDUCE-IT
|N = 4089
|N = 4090
|Primary composite endpoint|
|Cardiovascular death, myocardial infarction, stroke, coronary revascularization, hospitalization for unstable angina (5-point MACE)||705
|Key secondary composite endpoint|
|Cardiovascular death, myocardial infarction, stroke (3-point MACE)||459
|Other secondary endpoints|
|Fatal or non-fatal myocardial infarction||250
|Emergent or urgent coronary revascularization||216
|Cardiovascular death ||174
|Hospitalization for unstable angina ||108
|Fatal or non-fatal stroke||98
| Includes adjudicated cardiovascular deaths and deaths of undetermined causality.
 Determined to be caused by myocardial ischemia by invasive/non-invasive testing and requiring emergent hospitalization.
FULL VASCEPA PRESCRIBING INFORMATION CAN BE FOUND AT WWW.VASCEPA.COM.
This press release contains forward-looking statements, including statements about the subject patent litigation, Amarin’s plan to pursue the litigation vigorously and the validity or enforceability of the subject patents. These forward-looking statements are not promises or guarantees and involve substantial risks and uncertainties that may individually or mutually impact the matters herein, and cause actual results, events and performance to differ materially from such forward looking statements. Among the factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those described or projected herein include the following: events that could interfere with the continued validity or enforceability of a patent; uncertainties associated with litigation generally and patent litigation specifically; Amarin’s ability generally to maintain adequate patent protection and successfully enforce patent claims against third parties; commercializing Vascepa without violating the intellectual property rights of others; and uncertainties associated generally with research and development and regulatory submissions, action dates and approvals. A further list and description of these risks, uncertainties and other risks associated with an investment in Amarin can be found in Amarin’s filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, including its most recent quarterly report on Form 10-Q. Existing and prospective investors are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date hereof. Amarin undertakes no obligation to update or revise the information contained in this press release, whether as a result of new information, future events or circumstances or otherwise.
Availability of Other Information About Amarin
Investors and others should note that Amarin communicates with its investors and the public using the company website (www.amarincorp.com), the investor relations website (investor.amarincorp.com), including but not limited to investor presentations and investor FAQs, Securities and Exchange Commission filings, press releases, public conference calls and webcasts. The information that Amarin posts on these channels and websites could be deemed to be material information. As a result, Amarin encourages investors, the media, and others interested in Amarin to review the information that is posted on these channels, including the investor relations website, on a regular basis. This list of channels may be updated from time to time on Amarin’s investor relations website and may include social media channels. The contents of Amarin’s website or these channels, or any other website that may be accessed from its website or these channels, shall not be deemed incorporated by reference in any filing under the Securities Act of 1933.
Amarin Contact Information
Amarin Corporation plc
In U.S.: +1 (908) 719-1315
IR@amarincorp.com (investor inquiries)
Amarin Corporation plc
In U.S.: +1 (908) 892-2028
PR@amarincorp.com (media inquiries)
1 Bhatt DL, Steg PG, Brinton E, et al., on behalf of the REDUCE-IT Investigators. Rationale and Design of REDUCE‐IT: Reduction of Cardiovascular Events with Icosapent Ethyl–Intervention Trial. Clin Cardiol. 2017;40:138-148.
2 Bhatt DL, Steg PG, Miller M, et al., on behalf of the REDUCE-IT Investigators. Cardiovascular Risk Reduction with Icosapent Ethyl for Hypertriglyceridemia. N Engl J Med. 2019;380:11-22.
3 Bhatt DL, Steg PG, Miller M, et al., on behalf of the REDUCE-IT Investigators. Reduction in first and total ischemic events with icosapent ethyl across baseline triglyceride tertiles. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2019;74:1159-1161.