The Role of Patents in the Pharmaceutical Industry

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Introduction

The pharmaceutical industry has a major role in the past decades in developing new technology in the field of product and process development. Further technology advancement in the pharmaceutical field developed new life-saving drugs and to protect the inventions Intellectual property rights IPR has played a significant role. The term “Intellectual Property Rights” refers to the legal rights granted with the aim to protect the creations of the intellect. These rights include Industrial Property Rights e.g. Patents, Industrial Designs, Trademarks, and Copyright.

Pharmaceutical Industry

The pharmaceutical industry is where continuous innovation is the requirement to have a market presence. Pharmaceutical companies are focusing more on R&D to meet the competition and to have market share. Further innovation helps the research & development based pharma companies to compete with generic companies and subsequently, R&D involves enormous cost on the innovation that is critical for the industry. Therefore, protecting pharmaceutical inventions by patenting is crucial to avoid ruining up all efforts and costs associated with the process of developing new technologies. Patent protection is an important step to provide the opportunity to recover investments in new products. Patents are the legal protection for inventions as discovered by research-based pharmaceutical companies. For a patent to have any commercial advantage there must be a market for the invention that will support the cost of development of the invention and the patent holder discloses the invention.

A patent is an intellectual property right relating to inventions and is the grant of an exclusive right, for a limited period, provided by the government to the patentee, in exchange of full disclosure of his invention, for excluding others, from making, using, selling, importing the patented product or process producing that product for those purposes. The purpose of this system is to encourage inventions by promoting their protection and utilization so as to contribute to the development of industries, which in turn, contributes to the promotion of technological innovation and to the transfer and dissemination of technology. A patent is an exclusive right to an invention for a limited time period of 20 years, allowing for the manufacture and sale of a product. The invention to be patentable should be technical in nature and should meet the criteria of Novelty, Inventive Step, and Industrial applications. Of course, everything cannot be patented; discoveries, ideas, laws of nature, physical phenomena are excluded from the process.

Conclusion

The pharmaceutical industry has played a major role in the past decades in developing new technologies in the field of product and process development and with an evolving IP strategy. Patents have been considered as an impetus to speed up the innovation and are considered to be innovative in the pharmaceutical industry.

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