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Abortion drug maker drops challenge to Mississippi ban

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A manufacturer of the drug used in medication abortions on Thursday dropped its bid to sell mifepristone in Mississippi despite the state’s recently enacted abortion ban.

GenBioPro Inc said it was voluntarily dismissing its case in a filing in federal court in Jackson. The company had argued that federal regulators’ approval of mifepristone to induce abortion at up to 10 weeks of pregnancy overrode the state’s prohibition on nearly all abortions.

Nevada-based GenBioPro did not say why it was dropping its lawsuit in the filing, but noted it was doing so without prejudice, which means it can refile it. The company did not immediately reply to a request for comment.

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“We are pleased to have again successfully defended Mississippi’s abortion laws,” Mississippi Attorney General Lynn Fitch said in a statement.

Mississippi in 2007 passed a “trigger law” that would ban abortion with only narrow exceptions in the event that the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, its 1973 landmark ruling which established abortion rights nationwide.

The Supreme Court did that in June in Dobbs v. Jackson, opening the door to new abortion bans around the country. About half of U.S. states are expected to ban or restrict abortion or have already done so in the wake of Dobbs, including 13 with trigger laws like Mississippi.

GenBioPro had first sued the state in 2019 to challenge restrictions on mifepristone, including an effective ban on prescribing it through telemedicine. After the state’s trigger law took effect, the company argued that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s approval of mifepristone effectively shielded the drug from the new ban.

More than half of abortions in the U.S. are performed through medication.

Even before Dobbs, state laws making it difficult to access abortion fueled increasing demand for the pills, which some women have bought online from overseas illegally. (Reporting by Brendan Pierson in New York; Editing by Leslie Adler and Stephen Coates)



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