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U.S. senator slams Allergan tribal patent deal

Sept 15 (Reuters) - U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown said on Friday a deal Allergan Plc made with a Native American tribe to shield its patents "rips off consumers" and cannot "become the new normal."

The Ohio Democrat said in a statement to Reuters that he would look at how Congress can "close loopholes that drug companies exploit to avoid competition.

Allergan announced on September 8 it would transfer its patents relating to dry-eye medicine Restasis to the Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe, saying the tribes sovereign status shields the patents from administrative review. (Reporting by Jan Wolfe)