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Archived updates for Wednesday, November 10, 2004

"Wild Card" Patent Extensions to Spur Antibiotic Development?

Tax credits and patent extensions are among the financial lures that the government is considering as ways to get large drug companies to develop desperately-needed new antibiotics. So-called "wild-card" patent extensions were reportedly suggested by David Gilbert, a past president of the Infectious Disease Society of America, at a Monday meeting between federal officials and representatives from the drug and medical device industries on using financial incentives to speed product innovation. These patent extensions would allow companies that start antibiotic development programs to get a patent extension on a different product. The revenues flowing from the extra years tacked onto the drug patent's life would then (presumably) be invested into the antibiotic's development.
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