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Actavis, Purdue settle generic OxyContin lawsuits

NEW YORK (AP) -- Actavis Inc. and Purdue Pharma LP said Friday that they are settling a patent dispute, and Actavis will be able to sell a generic abuse-resistant version of Purdue's painkiller OxyContin starting in 2014.

Actavis said it will be allowed to sell a specific number of bottles of its generic OxyContin on Jan. 1, providing the Food and Drug Administration approves the drug. If the FDA does not approve the generic by Sept. 1, Actavis can sell a generic version made by Purdue.

The Parsippany, N.J., company, the third-largest generics maker in the world, said it expects more than $100 million in gross profit from generic OxyContin sales through 2015, and smaller contributions to its profit after that.

Analysts polled by FactSet predict net income of $1.08 billion for Actavis this year.

The companies said the agreement resolves all patent litigation between them.

Shares of Actavis rose $2.21, or 2.2 percent, to $101.10 in afternoon trading. Earlier in the day, the shares set an all-time high of $101.46.

Last week the FDA said it would not approve generic versions of OxyContin unless they included formulation changes designed to make the pill harder to abuse. The patent protecting OxyContin recently expired, which would normally have allowed other companies to start selling cheaper versions.

Purdue stopped selling the original form of OxyContin in 2010.