WTO Least-Developed Countries Request Waiver Of IP Rights On Pharma Products

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This week at the World Trade Organization intellectual property committee meeting, least-developed countries submitted a request to extend a waiver allowing them not to enforce intellectual property rights on pharmaceutical products. The countries have extended the waiver before, but this time they are seeking to make it indefinite, until they are no longer considered LDCs.

New Quiet Initiative To Improve Drug Access In Middle-Income Countries, Change Country Classification System

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This week a confidential high-level expert meeting was convened in Geneva to start work on a potential change in the country classification used by global health actors to remedy the growing problem of access to medicines in middle-income countries.

Medicines Patent Pool Nails Down Another Key Paediatric Drug

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The Medicines Patent Pool today announced it has struck a licence with MSD, the North American-based Merck pharmaceutical company, to boost access to and innovation on raltegravir, a child-approved HIV medicine. The outcome is particularly significant because it opens options for very young children.

In 21st Century No One Should Die For Lack Of Access To Medicines, Participants At UN Forum Say

Price of Medicines

Last week’s 2015 Social Forum led by the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) called for urgent action to facilitate access to medicines. In particular, the functioning of the intellectual property system was put into question. A number of recommendations were drawn by the secretariat after having been identified by participants.

TRIPS In Question During Social Forum Discussion On Access To Medicines

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Intellectual property rights are hindering access to medicines by maintaining monopolies and high prices, according to speakers at an annual United Nations forum on human rights last week. Flexibilities enshrined in the World Trade Organization intellectual property agreement are hampered by political and economical pressure, they said, and a new system should be devised for pharmaceutical products.

At WTO Next Week: GI Register, Plain Packaging, Women In Innovation

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The next meeting of the World Trade Organization intellectual property committee is expected to include discussions on women and innovation, and concerns about legislative efforts in the United Kingdom and Ireland to introduce plan packaging for tobacco products. Prior to the meeting, informal consultations will be held on the negotiating issue of an international register for geographical indications (GIs) for wines and spirits.

The Year In Biotech/Biodiversity: Patentability, Plant Varieties, Treaty Implementation

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Intellectual property-related developments expected this year could profoundly impact the fields of biotechnology and biodiversity. In addition, ongoing issues relating to plant variety protection and public health are expected to be at the forefront of discussions this year. The following is a look at many of the top issues to come.

Year Ahead: Key IP-Related Issues, Dates At The WTO In 2015

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This year is shaping up to be a busy one for the World Trade Organization, and intellectual property issues are among those coming up.

US Challenges For Biotech In 2015 – An Interview With BIO’s Hans Sauer

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The biotechnology industry is closely watching developments in the United States that could impact the industry in 2015. These include the regulatory framework for biosimilars, possible patent legislation, post-grant review procedure, and the consequences of the recent Supreme Court ruling banning the patenting of human genes. Hans Sauer, Deputy General Counsel for Intellectual Property at the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO), recently spoke with Intellectual Property Watch’s Catherine Saez. Sauer was asked to lay out the main developments to watch in the coming year.

Questions About Funding, Text Of Tufts Study On Drug Costs

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The Union for Affordable Cancer Treatment has sent a letter to the author of a much-noted Tufts University (US) study that found high development costs for medicines, with copies to the university administration. The letter requests transparency on the funding of the study and the press conference announcing the results, as well as copies of the study itself, which the group says was not made public, along with details to justify the result.