A Delaware federal jury in the US has directed AstraZeneca to pay $107.5m in damages to Pfizer’s Wyeth unit pertaining to a cancer drug patent trial.

The jury found that AstraZeneca’s lung cancer medication Tagrisso violated the patent rights of Wyeth unit, reported Reuters.

As per the jury, Tagrisso violated two patents related to methods for cancer treatment with Nerlynx, a breast cancer medicine marketed by Puma Biotechnology under licence from Pfizer.

Pfizer began legal action against AstraZeneca in 2021, alleging that Tagrisso used kinase inhibitors similar to Nerlynx for cancer treatment.

AstraZeneca has conveyed disappointment with the verdict and is said to be confident about its intellectual property stance for Tagrisso. The drugmaker also intends to vigorously defend its rights.

Pfizer is yet to comment on the verdict, while Puma Biotechnology is no longer involved in the lawsuit.

AstraZeneca refuted the infringement claims, contending that the patents in question are invalid.

US District Judge Matthew Kennelly will conduct a separate bench trial in June to address some of AstraZeneca’s remaining defenses.

The news agency said that this could potentially overturn the current decision.

In a similar development, Moderna announced that the European Patent Office has upheld the validity of one of its crucial patents, representing a victory in its ongoing legal clash with Pfizer and BioNTech over Covid-19 vaccine technology.

The legal battle started when Moderna sued Pfizer and BioNTech in 2022. The allegation has been that Pfizer and BioNTech utilized Moderna’s mRNA technology without authorisation in their Covid-19 vaccine, Comirnaty.

In reply, Pfizer and BioNTech countersued, contesting the validity of Moderna’s patent.

Pfizer expressed its disappointment and stated its intention to explore all legal avenues, including a possible appeal against the decision.

In a statement to Reuters, Pfizer said: “Irrespective of the outcome of this legal matter, we will continue to manufacture and supply the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine.”

On the other hand, Germany-based BioNTech said that Moderna’s patent remains invalid despite the European Patent Office’s decision.

Recently, a Massachusetts federal court has put a hold on a patent lawsuit as the US Patent Office is yet to determine the validity of Moderna’s patents.

Last month, Pfizer and Moderna started a legal battle over Covid-19 vaccine patents in the UK.