March 21, 2012
Indian Cancer Drug Patent Ruling May Make HIV Meds Cheaper
India’s Patent Office has ended exclusive rights to a cancer
drug made by German manufacturer Bayer, setting a precedent that could extend
to other treatments, including HIV/AIDS drugs, The Times of India reports.
After ending Bayer’s monopoly, the patent office issued its first-ever compulsory
license allowing a local manufacturer of generic meds to make and sell the
drug. This is only the second time a nation has issued a compulsory license for
a cancer drug. Thailand did so on four drugs between 2006 and 2008, also on
affordability grounds. Compulsory licenses can be issued under world trade
rules by nations that deem lifesaving drugs too expensive; the licenses allow for
local manufacture or importation of cheaper, generic versions.
To read the Times of India article, click here.
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