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Healthy Skepticism Library item: 20572

Warning: This library includes all items relevant to health product marketing that we are aware of regardless of quality. Often we do not agree with all or part of the contents.

 

Publication type: Journal Article

Brougher J
Evergreening patents: The Indian Supreme Court rejects patenting of incremental improvements
Journal of Commerical Biotechnology 2013; 19:(3): doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.5912/jcb614
http://commercialbiotechnology.com/index.php/jcb/article/view/614


Abstract:

On April 1, 2013, the Supreme Court in India handed down its decision to dismiss Swiss drug maker Novartis AG’s attempt to win patent protection for its cancer drug Glivec. In doing so, the Supreme Court held that incremental improvements or modifications to an existing drug are not patentable under India’s patent laws. While the ruling may have allowed India to maintain its ability to manufacture generic drugs, the ruling has increased the challenges that pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies face in obtaining patent protection in India. In the long term, these challenges may prove to have far greater implications for the biotechnology industry that go beyond merely the patentability of one drug product. In view of this recent decision, pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies are undoubtedly re-evaluating their foreign patent strategies.

 

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Far too large a section of the treatment of disease is to-day controlled by the big manufacturing pharmacists, who have enslaved us in a plausible pseudo-science...
The blind faith which some men have in medicines illustrates too often the greatest of all human capacities - the capacity for self deception...
Some one will say, Is this all your science has to tell us? Is this the outcome of decades of good clinical work, of patient study of the disease, of anxious trial in such good faith of so many drugs? Give us back the childlike trust of the fathers in antimony and in the lancet rather than this cold nihilism. Not at all! Let us accept the truth, however unpleasant it may be, and with the death rate staring us in the face, let us not be deceived with vain fancies...
we need a stern, iconoclastic spirit which leads, not to nihilism, but to an active skepticism - not the passive skepticism, born of despair, but the active skepticism born of a knowledge that recognizes its limitations and knows full well that only in this attitude of mind can true progress be made.
- William Osler 1909