IP Australia opens public consultation on proposed law changes

By Phillips Ormonde Fitzpatrick,  Lexology 

Australia September 12 2017

IP Australia have opened public consultation on five IP policy matters.

Four of these policy matters form part of IP Australia’s proposed implementation of the Government’s response to the Productivity Commission’s 2016 Report on Intellectual Property Arrangements. The remaining paper relates to a trade marks issue. IP Australia is proposing to introduce the legislative changes required to implement the Productivity Commission’s accepted recommendations in two separate Bills. These bills will be developed over the next couple of years, with separate rounds of public consultation. Continue reading

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Is India’s Expedited Examination Of Patents A Big Deal?

By Patralekha Chatterjee, IP Watch

In recent days, the Indian news media has been awash with stories about a patent granted within a record 113 days. The norm, till very recently, was anywhere between three to five years and sometimes more. However, change is in the air.

In 2016, India’s federal Ministry of Commerce and Industry introduced a new provision under the amended Patent Rules, which seeks to fast-track the process of granting patents, and in 2017, more than a dozen companies including the Hyderabad-based Optimus Pharma Private Limited, were granted patents within a record time – between 113 and 300 days. Continue reading

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Pharmaceutical Pricing Hostages

By Ellen t’ Hoen, Medicines Law & Policy

Ireland seems to be the stage of some of the most bizarre pharmaceutical company behaviour these days. This month, the pharmaceutical company CSL Behring announced it will no longer provide Respreeza (human alpha1-proteinase inhibitor), a treatment for hereditary emphysema for free. Most of the patients that depend on the programme had volunteered to be part of the clinical trials to test the product, which was necessary to obtain a marketing authorisation for the product. CSL Behring did so in 2015 and priced the product at €103,768 (VAT incl.) per year’s treatment. Here you can find the cost-effectiveness evaluation by the Irish National Centre for Pharmacoeconomics (NCPE). The company has now told the patients that the donation programme they depend on will come to a halt. Of course, if they pay the price or persuade the government to pay the patients can get access to the product. This case is particularly bitter because the patients who are left out in the cold helped the company to get its marketing approval. In other walks of life, this would be called a hostage situation. Continue reading

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DNDi welcomes Malaysia’s move to secure access to more affordable treatments for hepatitis C

[Kuala Lumpur, Geneva – 20 September 2017]

Malaysia has issued a “government use” licence enabling access to more affordable versions of an expensive and patented medicine to treat hepatitis C. This landmark decision should help the more than 400,000 people living with hepatitis C in Malaysia access sofosbuvir, and could have important repercussions in the global effort to secure access to expensive treatments for this viral disease. Continue reading

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This Shield of Patents Protects the World’s Best-Selling Drug

Over Humira’s lifetime, AbbVie has secured more than 100 patents to prevent anyone from attempting to copy the biologic, with $16 billion in annual sales.

By Cynthia Koons

Humira, a treatment for inflammatory diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and psoriasis made by AbbVie Inc. is the planet’s best-selling drug. It’s also been around almost 15 years. Those two facts alone would normally have rival drugmakers eagerly circling, ready to roll out generic versions that could win a piece of the aging medicine’s $16 billion in annual sales. Yet last year, when the patent on Humira’s main ingredient expired, not a single competitor launched a copycat version. Figuring out how to manufacture it wasn’t the obstacle. The real challenge was the seemingly impregnable fortress of patents AbbVie has methodically constructed around its prized moneymaker. Continue reading

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Letter: Over 30 civil society organisations urge EU to abolish supplementary protection certificates mechanism

Source: MSF Access Campaign
In an open letter and open submission, thirty-three civil society organisations have called on the European Commission to abolish the supplementary protection certificates (SPC) mechanism and to stop encouraging the inclusion of SPCs – or similar mechanisms, such as patent term extensions – in free trade agreements with other countries.
Supplementary protection certificates (SPCs) expand and extend existing monopoly rights of pharmaceutical corporations. As such, SPCs lead to higher medicines prices by preventing generic competition for a longer period of time and prolonging the monopolies of originator pharmaceutical companies.

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NGOs call for supplementary protection certificates to be abolished

By Carmen Paun
9/11/17, 1:43 PM CET

A group of 33 civil society organizations led by Doctors Without Borders today asked the European Commission to abolish supplementary protection certificates (SPCs), which they claim lead to unaffordable medicines prices that stay in place for longer periods of time.

The group’s call comes as the Commission is reviewing a 2009 regulation governing the certificates, which are used to cover the time between obtaining patent protection for a drug and its market authorization. A meeting on the subject is taking place today in Munich, convened by the Max Planck Institute, which is conducting a study that will be used as part of the Commission’s review. Continue reading

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