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Patent Chokepoints In The Influenza-Related Medicines Industry: Can Patent Pools Provide Balanced Access?, Dana Beldiman
This paper illustrates the fact that when biological materials are used for development of pharmaceuticals, the patent system may function sub-optimally and may give rise to patent “thickets” and “anti-commons” which prevent commercialization of adequate amounts of product. These circumstances include inventions based on the same biological resource, patenting of largely similar functionalities, gene patents and patents that are narrow and fragmented. As a result, in order to obtain freedom to operate, drug developers must license-in multiple patents, often from competitors. This situation gives rise to uncertainty and is prone to hold-outs. The number of players actually developing drugs is ...