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PDL Biopharma says it settled Roche royalty fight

NEW YORK (AP) -- PDL Biopharma said Monday it agreed to settle its disputes with Swiss drugmaker Roche over royalty rates on a group of drugs PDL helped develop.

The dispute concerned four cancer drugs: Avastin, Herceptin, Kadcyla, and Perjeta; also involved were the asthma treatment Xolair, and Lucentis, an eye drug. PDL said it won't get royalties on U.S. sales of Lucentis, but it will get royalties on sales in other markets until the end of 2014. The Incline Village, Nev., company said it will get royalty payments on sales of the other drugs until the end of 2015.

The deal between the companies extends back to Aug. 15, PDL said. Roche also agreed to stick to the terms of a previous agreement that covered a leukemia drug called Gazyva.

PDL BioPharma Inc. helped develop the drugs, and the two sides have been arguing about royalty payments since 2010. PDL had said Genentech had underpaid royalties since 2007. PDL wanted Roche's Genentech unit to keep paying royalties based on European sales of the drugs, and Genentech wanted to pay royalties on U.S. sales only.

The companies were also arguing about the patent protection of the drugs, and PDL said Monday that Roche won't challenge those patents.

PDL said the agreement resolves all the legal disputes between the companies, as well as its effort to take Roche to arbitration. Until the end of 2015, PDL will receive a single royalty rate on sales of the drugs. In the past, its payments decreased as total sales of the drugs increased.

Over the first nine months of 2013 PDL reported $332.8 million in revenue. All but $1 million came from royalty payments.

Shares of PDL Biopharma fell 22 cents, or 2.4 percent, to $8.88 in afternoon trading.