Diovan is a medication used to treat high blood pressure, also known as hypertension. This drug is available only with a doctor’s prescription.
Valsartan is the generic name for this medication. Diovan is the brand name it is produced and sold under. The pharmaceutical company, Novartis, currently holds the patent for Diovan.
Although valsartan is sold as a generic drug in some countries, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved it for use in the United States, nor is it legally available due to an exclusive patent.
Novartis' exclusive drug patent for Diovan is due to expire in September 2012, at which time the exclusive rights for manufacturing the drug under this brand name will expire. This will allow other companies the chance to manufacture and sell the drug in North America.
Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. is the world’s most popular pharmaceutical producer of generic drugs. Teva Industries, whose headquarters are in Israel, are currently working to produce a generic drug to substitute for Diovan.
Once the exclusive drug patent expires and the FDA has approved a generic substitute, the generic drug will then become legally available to citizens of the United States.