Amylin Sues Eli Lilly For Anticompetitve Behavior

Amylin Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:AMLN) is suing Eli Lilly (NYSE:LLY) for allegedly violating the companies’ strategic alliance agreements and engaging in anticompetitive activity.

The drug maker claims Lilly displayed improper, unlawful and anticompetitive behavior in an effort to maximize commercialization of exenatide, an ingredient used in type-2 diabetes treatment Byetta, which Amylin and Lilly have been co-developing and commercializing since striking a deal in 2002.

The company said Lilly’s behavior reflects plans to implement its recently announced global alliance agreement with Boehringer Ingelheim GmbH to jointly develop and commercialize BI’s linagliptin product, which will compete directly with Amylin’s exenatide products.

In the complaint, filed with a Southern California district court, Amylin seeks a preliminary and permanent injunction to prevent Lilly from proceeding with plans to use the same sales force to sell both rival drugs.

“Amylin selected Lilly as a partner to promote development and maximize sales of Amylin's exenatide products,” Amylin said in a statement. “We are disappointed that we could not resolve this matter amicably and that we were forced to bring legal action to protect our rights, our products and our shareholders.”

Despite the lawsuit, the pharmaceutical company said it intends to continue collaborating with Lilly in the development and commercialization of exenatide products.