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Full-Text Articles in Law

Defining Health Affordability, Govind C. Persad Nov 2023

Defining Health Affordability, Govind C. Persad

Sturm College of Law: Faculty Scholarship

Affordable health care, insurance, and prescription drugs are priorities for the public and for policymakers. Yet the lack of a consensus definition of health affordability is increasingly recognized as a roadblock to health reform efforts. This Article explains how and why American health law invokes health affordability and attempts, or fails, to define the concept. It then evaluates potential affordability definitions and proposes strategies for defining affordability more clearly and consistently in health law.

Part I examines the role health affordability plays in American health policy, in part by contrasting the United States’s health system with systems elsewhere. Part II …


Is The Chemical Genus Claim Really “Dead” At The Federal Circuit?: Part Ii, Christopher M. Holman Oct 2022

Is The Chemical Genus Claim Really “Dead” At The Federal Circuit?: Part Ii, Christopher M. Holman

Faculty Works

A 2020 law review article entitled The Death of the Genus Claim (“Death”) purports to document a dramatic shift in the Federal Circuit’s interpretation of 35 U.S.C. 112(a)’s enablement and written description requirements, particularly as applied to chemical genus claims. According to the authors of Death, it has become nearly impossible to obtain a chemical genus claim that will be upheld as valid in the face of a challenge for overbreadth under Section 112(a). Death was cited extensively in Amgens’s successful petition for certiorari in Amgen v. Sanofi, a case asking the Supreme Court to overturn the Federal Circuit’s decision …


Race And Regulation Podcast Episode 6 - Race, Social Inequalities, And Clinical Drug Trials, Jill A. Fisher Jul 2022

Race And Regulation Podcast Episode 6 - Race, Social Inequalities, And Clinical Drug Trials, Jill A. Fisher

Penn Program on Regulation Podcasts

As mandated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, clinical trials for new pharmaceuticals enroll healthy people as paid research participants to test for drug safety and tolerability. But the social injustices from these trials are too often overlooked. Drawing on her award-winning book, Adverse Events, Jill Fisher of UNC-Chapel Hill’s Center for Bioethics explains how clinical drug trials attract disproportionate participation by racial and ethnic minorities who then disproportionately assume risks of participating in these trials, often just to stay financially afloat.


Eviscerating Patent Scope, Shahrokh Falati Jan 2022

Eviscerating Patent Scope, Shahrokh Falati

Articles & Chapters

The scope of patent claims directed to inventions in the field of pharmaceuticals and biotechnology has been stumped by the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit’s recent jurisprudence on 35 U.S.C. § 112. Specifically, the application of a heightened test for enablement of claims to a genus of compounds with functional limitations or a genus of therapeutic antibodies, coupled with an increasingly broader application of the written description doctrine, has resulted in considerable uncertainty in the biopharmaceutical industry. The Federal Circuit’s shift in interpreting 35 U.S.C. § 112 contravenes the statute and Supreme Court precedent by splitting the singular …


A Modest Proposal: Leveraging Private Enforcement Mechanisms And The Bayh-Dole Act To Reduce Drug Prices In The U.S. Healthcare Industry, Brittany Day Dec 2021

A Modest Proposal: Leveraging Private Enforcement Mechanisms And The Bayh-Dole Act To Reduce Drug Prices In The U.S. Healthcare Industry, Brittany Day

Duke Journal of Constitutional Law & Public Policy Sidebar

The United States healthcare system is one of the most expensive in the world. Unlike other products, when drug prices skyrocket, people may die. While advocating for various solutions, both the Biden and Trump administrations have recognized the importance of halting the rise of prescription drug prices. Most of the solutions advanced are focused on government-side initiatives, such as allowing Medicare to directly negotiate with pharmaceutical companies. Yet, the "march-in rights" built into the Bayh-Dole Act create an opportunity to set up a mechanism that would invite private actors to sue pharmaceutical companies for unconscionable drug pricing. The Bayh-Dole Act …


Please Consult Your Lawyer Before Taking Sorrell: How The Fda Should Approach Social Media For Prescription Drug Advertising, Steven Valentino Jan 2021

Please Consult Your Lawyer Before Taking Sorrell: How The Fda Should Approach Social Media For Prescription Drug Advertising, Steven Valentino

Upper Level Writing Requirement Research Papers

No abstract provided.


Regulators, Pivotal Clinical Trials, And Drug Regulation In The Age Of Covid-19, Joel Lexchin, Janice Graham, Matthew Herder, Tom Jefferson, Trudo Lemmens Jan 2021

Regulators, Pivotal Clinical Trials, And Drug Regulation In The Age Of Covid-19, Joel Lexchin, Janice Graham, Matthew Herder, Tom Jefferson, Trudo Lemmens

Articles, Book Chapters, & Popular Press

Medicine regulators rely on pivotal clinical trials to make decisions about approving a new drug, but little is known about how they judge whether pivotal trials justify the approval of new drugs. We explore this issue by looking at the positions of 3 major regulators: the European Medicines Agency, Food and Drug Administration, and Health Canada. Here we report their views and the implications of those views for the approval process. On various points, the 3 regulators are ambiguous, consistent, and demonstrate flexibility. The range of views may well reflect different regulatory cultures. Although clinical trial information from pivotal trials …


Branded Drug Companies Are Successfully Asserting The Doctrine Of Equivalents In Hatch-Waxman Litigation, Christopher M. Holman Jan 2021

Branded Drug Companies Are Successfully Asserting The Doctrine Of Equivalents In Hatch-Waxman Litigation, Christopher M. Holman

Faculty Works

This article reports the results of a study analyzing every Federal Circuit decision the author could find dating back to 2005 that applies the doctrine equivalents (DOE) in the context of pharmaceutical patent litigation, and in particular infringement lawsuits brought against Abbreviated New Drug Application (ANDA) applicants by branded drug companies under the Hatch-Waxman Act. The results of this study show that pharmaceutical innovators were prevailing against would-be generic competitors under the DOE both prior to, and subsequent to, a 2007 article by Professors Lemley and Allison describing the demise of the doctrine equivalents, but that patentees’ success rate has …


Government Involvement In Pharmaceutical Development Can Come Back To Haunt A Drug Company, Christopher M. Holman Jan 2021

Government Involvement In Pharmaceutical Development Can Come Back To Haunt A Drug Company, Christopher M. Holman

Faculty Works

The U.S. government has long played a significant role in pharmaceutical innovation, often through the funding of research, or collaboration in clinical trials. Unfortunately, government involvement can come at a cost for innovative drug companies, leading to allegations that taxpayers are being required to “pay twice” for the resulting drugs, particularly when the drug is considered essential and is offered at a price that is seen as “unreasonably” high. This Article discusses two aspects of ongoing efforts to leverage government involvement in pharmaceutical development and commercialization as a means for regulating of drug prices. The first is the assertion that …


Pricing Drugs Fairly, Govind C. Persad Jan 2021

Pricing Drugs Fairly, Govind C. Persad

Sturm College of Law: Faculty Scholarship

Dissatisfaction with drug prices has prompted a flurry of recent legislation and academic research. But while pharmaceutical policy often regards fair pricing as a goal, the concept of fairness itself frequently goes undefined. Legal scholarship—even work ostensibly focused on fairness—has not defined and defended an account of fair pricing. Recent legislative proposals passed by the House and proposed by Sens. Ron Wyden and Chuck Grassley have similarly avoided a determinate position on fairness. This Article explains and defends an account of what makes a price for a drug fair that identifies fair price with social value, argues for implementing fair …


Distorted Drug Patents, Erika Lietzan Oct 2020

Distorted Drug Patents, Erika Lietzan

Faculty Publications

Drug patents are distorted. Unlike most other inventors, drug inventors must complete years of testing to the government’s specifications and seek government approval to commercialize their inventions. All the while, the patent term runs. When a drug inventor finally launches a medicine that embodies the invention, only a fraction of the patent life remains. And yet, conventional wisdom holds — and empirical studies show — that patent life is essential to innovation in the pharmaceutical industry, perhaps more so than any other inventive industry. Congress tried to do something about this in 1984, authorizing the Patent and Trademark Office to …


Importing Prescription Drugs From Canada — Legal And Practical Problems With The Trump Administration's Proposal, Rachel E. Sachs, Nicholas Bagley May 2020

Importing Prescription Drugs From Canada — Legal And Practical Problems With The Trump Administration's Proposal, Rachel E. Sachs, Nicholas Bagley

Articles

As Americans report ever-growing difficulty affording their prescription drugs, President Donald Trump has come under increasing pressure to act. To date, the Trump administration has attempted to advance a number of policy initiatives by means of executive action, but it has not yet adopted a program that would meaningfully assist patients. Most recently, the administration proposed a rule that, if finalized, would allow states to develop programs to import lower-priced prescription drugs from Canada, with the intent of reducing spending on drugs by U.S. patients and states and increasing access for patients.


The Cost Of Novelty, Will Nicholson Price Ii Mar 2020

The Cost Of Novelty, Will Nicholson Price Ii

Articles

Patent law tries to spur the development of new and better innova­tive technology. But it focuses much more on “new” than “better”—and it turns out that “new” carries real social costs. I argue that patent law promotes innovation that diverges from existing technology, either a little (what I call “differentiating innovation”) or a lot (“exploring innova­tion”), at the expense of innovation that tells us more about existing technology (“deepening innovation”). Patent law’s focus on newness is unsurprising, and fits within a well-told narrative of innovative diversity accompanied by market selection of the best technologies. Unfortunately, innovative diversity brings not only …


Congress Should Decline Ill-Advised Legislative Proposals Aimed At Evergreening Of Pharmaceutical Patent Protection, Christopher M. Holman Jan 2020

Congress Should Decline Ill-Advised Legislative Proposals Aimed At Evergreening Of Pharmaceutical Patent Protection, Christopher M. Holman

Faculty Works

There is a widespread perception that drug prices in the U.S. are much higher than they should be, and that the problem is only getting worse. Critics argue that the pharmaceutical industry is improperly gaming the system in a manner that takes advantage of legal loopholes and administrative limitations to the detriment of patients and third-party payers. Both houses of Congress responded in 2019 with a slew of hearings focused on pharmaceutical pricing, and dozens of bills have been introduced that would attempt to bring down the cost of drugs. Much of the discussion, and some of the proposed legislation, …


The Death Of The Genus Claim, Dmitry Karshtedt, Mark A. Lemley, Sean B. Seymore Jan 2020

The Death Of The Genus Claim, Dmitry Karshtedt, Mark A. Lemley, Sean B. Seymore

GW Law Faculty Publications & Other Works

The central feature of patent law in the chemical, biotechnology, and pharmaceutical industries is the genus claim – a patent that covers not just one specific chemical but a group of related chemicals. Genus claims are everywhere, and any patent lawyer will tell you they are critical to effective patent protection.

But as we show in this article, the law has changed dramatically in the last twenty-five years, to the point where it is no longer possible to have a valid genus claim. Courts almost always hold them invalid. Remarkably, they do this without having acknowledged that they have fundamentally …


The Problem With Relying On Profit-Driven Models To Produce Pandemic Drugs, Ana Santos Rutschman Jan 2020

The Problem With Relying On Profit-Driven Models To Produce Pandemic Drugs, Ana Santos Rutschman

All Faculty Scholarship

The longstanding problems of relying on a market response to a pandemic are becoming readily apparent in the United States, which has quickly become the epicenter of the COVID-19 outbreak. The problems are particularly pronounced in pharmaceutical markets, where we are pinning our hopes for both cures and vaccines. In previous work we have shown how characteristics of healthcare markets in the United States create a divergence between the private incentives of for-profit companies and public health needs, leading to sub-optimal health outcomes in what is a uniquely market-driven healthcare system. In this Essay, written as the COVID-19 pandemic unfolds, …


Drugs' Other Side Effects, Craig J. Konnoth Jan 2019

Drugs' Other Side Effects, Craig J. Konnoth

Publications

Drugs often induce unintended, adverse physiological reactions in those that take them—what we commonly refer to as “side-effects.” However, drugs can produce other, broader, unintended, even non-physiological harms. For example, some argue that taking Truvada, a drug that prevents HIV transmission, increases promiscuity and decreases condom use. Expensive Hepatitis C treatments threaten to bankrupt state Medicaid programs. BiDil, which purported to treat heart conditions for self-identified African-Americans, has been criticized for reifying racial categories. Although the Food & Drug Administration (“FDA”) has broad discretion under the Food, Drugs, and Cosmetics Act (“FDCA”) to regulate drugs, it generally considers only traditional …


Drug Prices, Dying Patients, And The Pharmaceutical Marketplace: A New Conditional Approval Pathway For Critical Unmet Medical Needs, Robert A. Bohrer Jan 2019

Drug Prices, Dying Patients, And The Pharmaceutical Marketplace: A New Conditional Approval Pathway For Critical Unmet Medical Needs, Robert A. Bohrer

Faculty Scholarship

Prescription drugs have been a major topic in the news for much of the past year. There are two issues which appear often: first, the very high prices of new drugs, particularly the "specialty" drugs developed for serious diseases; and second, the time required for FDA approval in relation to the perceived need for earlier access to new therapies for critically ill patients. Much less in the news, but lurking behind both issues, is the need for better information for physicians and patients to use in making decisions about prescribing and taking drugs, and for insurance companies and the government …


Computational Experimentation, Tabrez Y. Ebrahim Jan 2019

Computational Experimentation, Tabrez Y. Ebrahim

Faculty Scholarship

Experimentation conjures images of laboratories and equipment in biotechnology, chemistry, materials science, and pharmaceuticals. Yet modern day experimentation is not limited to only chemical synthesis, but is increasingly computational. Researchers in the unpredictable arts can experiment upon the functions, properties, reactions, and structures of chemical compounds with highly accurate computational techniques. These computational capabilities challenge the enablement and utility patentability requirements. The patent statute requires that the inventor explain how to make and use the invention without undue experimentation and that the invention have at least substantial and specific utility. These patentability requirements do not align with computational research capabilities, …


Direct-To-Consumer Ads Are Misleading: Concise Statements Of Effectiveness Should Be Required, Robert A. Bohrer Jan 2019

Direct-To-Consumer Ads Are Misleading: Concise Statements Of Effectiveness Should Be Required, Robert A. Bohrer

Faculty Scholarship

Direct-to-consumer (DTC) advertising of prescription pharmaceuticals has been the subject of much criticism and the issue has become even more pressing with the Trump administration’s proposal to require the disclosure of prices in DTC ads. In this article I argue that a more powerful approach to the problem of DTC ads would require the disclosure of the effectiveness of the advertised drugs, at least as found in the clinical trials submitted for FDA approval. To support the need for an effectiveness disclosure, I describe the problem of DTC ads and examine representative ads to illustrate the potential of such ads …


Limiting State Flexibility In Drug Pricing, Nicholas Bagley, Rachel E. Sachs Sep 2018

Limiting State Flexibility In Drug Pricing, Nicholas Bagley, Rachel E. Sachs

Articles

Throughout the United States, escalating drug prices are putting immense pressure on state budgets. Several states are looking for ways to push back. Last year, Massachusetts asked the Trump administration for a waiver that would, among other things, allow its Medicaid program to decline to cover costly drugs for which there is limited or inadequate evidence of clinical efficacy. By credibly threatening to exclude such drugs from coverage, Massachusetts hoped to extract price concessions and constrain the fastest-growing part of its Medicaid budget.


Drug Approval In A Learning Health System, W. Nicholson Price Jul 2018

Drug Approval In A Learning Health System, W. Nicholson Price

Articles

The current system of FDA approval seems to make few happy. Some argue FDA approves drugs too slowly; others too quickly. Many agree that FDA—and the health system generally—should gather information after drugs are approved to learn how well they work and how safe they are. This is hard to do. FDA has its own surveillance systems, but those systems face substantial limitations in practical use. Drug companies can also conduct their own studies, but have little incentive to do so, and often fail to fulfil study commitments made to FDA. Proposals to improve this dynamic often suggest gathering more …


On Drugs: Preemption, Presumption, And Remedy, Elizabeth Mccuskey May 2018

On Drugs: Preemption, Presumption, And Remedy, Elizabeth Mccuskey

Faculty Scholarship

This essay explores the role of litigation in drug safety regulation and the role of drug safety regulation in litigation, exemplified by the 2017 National Health Law Moot Court Problem. Using the example of failure-to-update claims against generic drug manufacturers, this essay argues that pharmaceutical preemption doctrine would benefit from a tailored application of the presumption against preemption. It proposes a presumption that Congress does not intend to displace historic state remedies for injury without clearly saying so, focusing on the role of remedy to account for the evolving overlap in federal and state police powers over health and to …


Cancer's Ip, Jacob S. Sherkow Jan 2018

Cancer's Ip, Jacob S. Sherkow

Articles & Chapters

The state of publicly funded science is in peril. Instead, new biomedical research efforts — in particular, the recent funding of a “Cancer Moonshot” — have focused on employing public-private partnerships, joint ventures between private industry and public agencies, as being more politically palatable. Yet, public-private partnerships like the Cancer Moonshot center on the production of public goods: scientific information. Using private incentives in this context presents numerous puzzles for both intellectual property law and information policy. This Article examines whether—and to what extent — intellectual property and information policy can be appropriately tailored to the goals of public-private partnerships. …


Preparing For The Apocalypse: A Multi-Prong Proposal To Develop Countermeasures For Biological, Chemical, Radiological, And Nuclear Threats, Constance E. Bagley, Anat Alon-Beck Jan 2018

Preparing For The Apocalypse: A Multi-Prong Proposal To Develop Countermeasures For Biological, Chemical, Radiological, And Nuclear Threats, Constance E. Bagley, Anat Alon-Beck

Faculty Publications

The false alarm of an Hawaiian nuclear attack in January 2018 is an example of the lack of U.S. preparedness for attacks using nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction. To address such threats, this Article proposes the establishment of a nation-wide integrated defense of health countermeasures initiative (“DHCI”), which is a multi-prong program to create a defensive triad comprising government, private industry, and academia to develop countermeasures for health threats posed by biological, chemical, radiological, and nuclear (“BCRN”) attacks. Key elements of our multi-faceted proposal include the use of the government’s Other Transaction Authority to simplify procurement arrangements, the …


Scientific Trials--In The Laboratories, Not The Courts, Nicholas Bagley, Aaron E. Carroll, Pieter A. Cohen Jan 2018

Scientific Trials--In The Laboratories, Not The Courts, Nicholas Bagley, Aaron E. Carroll, Pieter A. Cohen

Articles

In 2015, one of us published a peer-reviewed study, together with colleagues at the University of California, San Francisco, replicating prior research from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) detecting a designer stimulant, β-methylphenylethylamine, in sports, weight loss, and “cognitive function” supplements sold in the United States. The confirmatory study prompted the FDA to take enforcement action against companies selling the stimulant as a dietary ingredient. One of the companies that received an FDA warning letter sued the study’s authors for $200 million in damages for libel, claiming, without supporting scientific evidence, that multiple statements in the article were …


How Dreamland Colored My Summer Vacation And Thinking About The Opioid Epidemic, Elizabeth Leonard Jan 2018

How Dreamland Colored My Summer Vacation And Thinking About The Opioid Epidemic, Elizabeth Leonard

Scholarly Works

Book Review of Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic by Sam Quinones,(2018).


Patent Law's Reproducibility Paradox, Jacob S. Sherkow Jan 2017

Patent Law's Reproducibility Paradox, Jacob S. Sherkow

Articles & Chapters

Clinical research faces a reproducibility crisis. Many recent clinical and preclinical studies appear to be irreproducible; their results cannot be verified by outside researchers. This is problematic for not only scientific reasons but legal ones: patents grounded in irreproducible research appear to fail their constitutional bargain of property rights in exchange for working disclosures of inventions. The culprit is likely patent law’s doctrine of enablement. Although the doctrine requires patents to enable others to make and use their claimed inventions, current difficulties in applying the doctrine mitigate or even actively dissuade reproducible data in patents. This Article assesses the difficulties …


Patent Pacifism, Clark D. Asay Jan 2017

Patent Pacifism, Clark D. Asay

Faculty Scholarship

Over the last decade, much of the patent law literature has focused on the problem of “patent trolls,” or patent owners who don’t make products, but sue others that do. The basic complaint against these types of entities is that they impose a tax on innovation without providing offsetting societal benefits. Furthermore, their patent assertions have been on the rise, with a significant percentage of patent suits now attributable to them. In short, the troll phenomenon suggests a problem of excessive patent assertions.

But despite the importance of the troll phenomenon, the fact remains that most patents are never asserted, …


Much Ado About The Tpp's Effect On Pharmaceuticals, Emily M. Morris Jan 2017

Much Ado About The Tpp's Effect On Pharmaceuticals, Emily M. Morris

Faculty Publications

The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement’s many provisions that were beneficial to the pharmaceutical industry have caused a good deal of controversy. Specifically, critics allege that the TPP’s provisions requiring that member states expand patentable subject matter, adjust pharmaceutical patent terms, and link regulatory marketing approval to a drug's patent status would have raised drug prices and hindered access to medicines, particularly in developing countries. Closer examination of these provisions as well as the various ways in which member states can modify or ameliorate the effects of these provisions suggests that their potential effect on drug prices and access to health care …