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Somaxon Pharmaceuticals Receives Notice of Allowance for Patent Application

23-Feb-2011 | Source : | Visits : 9015

SAN DIEGO, CA - Somaxon Pharmaceuticals Inc., a specialty pharmaceutical company, announced in a press release that it has received a Notice of Allowance from the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) for claims in US patent application no. 11/781,165.

This patent application generally relates to dosing Silenor at least three hours after a meal to promote faster onset of action and reduce the potential for next-day residual sedation. A Notice of Allowance is the official notification that the USPTO finds the claimed subject matter allowable and intends to issue the patent pending payment of the issue fee. Given this action, Somaxon expects the patent to issue within the next few months. Once issued, this patent will expire no earlier than July 2027. Somaxon will list the patent in the Orange Book once it is issued.

"This food effect patent will further bolster our Silenor patent estate, and we expect that it will provide us with a significant opportunity to drive Silenor growth well into the next decade," said Richard W. Pascoe, Somaxon's president and chief executive officer. "The pharmacokinetic changes that result from dosing Silenor within three hours after a meal have important implications relating to both the efficacy and safety of the product that are described in the Silenor prescribing information."

Silenor is a low-dose (3 mg, 6 mg) oral tablet formulation of doxepin, and is the first and only non-scheduled prescription sleep medication approved to treat insomnia characterized by difficulty with sleep maintenance. Sleep maintenance is defined as waking frequently during the night and/or waking too early and being unable to return to sleep.
A doctor should be consulted if insomnia worsens or is not better within 7 to 10 days. This may mean that there is another condition causing the sleep problem.

Patients should be sure that they are able to devote 7 to 8 hours to sleep before being active again. Silenor should be taken within 30 minutes of bedtime. Patients should not take Silenor with alcohol or with other medicines that can cause drowsiness. Silenor should not be taken with or within two weeks after taking a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI). Patients should not take Silenor if they have untreated narrow angle glaucoma, if they have severe urinary retention, if they have severe sleep apnea or if they are allergic to any of the ingredients in Silenor. Until patients know how they will react to Silenor, they should not drive or operate machinery at night after taking Silenor, and they should be careful in performing such activities during the day following taking Silenor. Before taking Silenor, patients should tell their doctors if they have a history of depression, mental illness or suicidal thoughts. Patients should call their doctors right away if after taking Silenor they walk, drive, eat or engage in other activities while asleep. Drowsiness was the most common adverse event observed in clinical trials.
For more information, please see the complete Prescribing Information, including the Medication Guide, at or

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Headquartered in San Diego, CA, Somaxon Pharmaceuticals Inc. is a specialty pharmaceutical company focused on the in-licensing, development and commercialization of proprietary branded pharmaceutical products and late-stage product candidates for the treatment of diseases and disorders in the central nervous system therapeutic area.


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