Intellectual Property

The Business of Biotechnology

    All companies — large and small, biotech included — have felt the pinch of the current (or recent, depending on your point of view) recession. From huge multinational companies to virtual start-ups, all are taking a good hard look at the way they do business. And as it does every year, the 2010 BIO International Convention will offer something for every company and every situation. Business-oriented sessions range from hard-earned experience to provocative new ideas. On the BioProcess…

Patents, Politics, and Polypeptides

Humor columnist Dave Barry once opined, “Without question, the greatest invention in the history of mankind is beer. Oh, I grant you that the wheel was also a fine invention, but the wheel does not go nearly as well with pizza.” Certainly, few biological concoctions have achieved that level of popularity — but with a little luck, your company will produce at least one invention with the potential for measurable success in its target market. But with success comes competition,…

The Business of Biotech

      Calivin Coolidge, who served as president of the United States from 1923 to 1929, is often misquoted as saying “The business of America is business.” According to historians, however, what he really said was, “The chief business of the American people is business.” And he went on in the same speech to say, “Of course, the accumulation of wealth cannot be justified as the chief end of existence.” So the real Coolidge (as opposed to the caricature…

Of Mice and Men…

Few US industries demonstrate preeminent creative and financial world leadership year in and year out, but we can think of two that look forward to continuing blockbusters that will provide mountains of new cash followed by consistent follow-on revenues. In both arenas, an idea is calculated to be something that people everywhere will want, so it is launched with a huge bolus of cash and a cash burn that almost takes its company to the brink. Both industries capitalize on…

How to Justify Investment in Anticounterfeiting

Pharmaceutical products are critical to the social, economic, and political stability of societies around the world. No other business sector is more dependent on consumer confidence. Like food products, drugs are highly vulnerable to deliberate and/or accidental disruption. A small tablet has almost no intrinsic value on its own; its value derives from the pedigree of its manufacturer and the belief that the pill will change someone’s life for the better. Manufacturers hold a sacred trust (given them by their…

Opening the Door to the Chinese Pharmaceutical Market

Virtually all aspects of the Chinese economy are booming, not the least of which is its pharmaceutical sector. Growing at 20% over the past five years, the $15 billion Chinese pharmaceutical market is predicted to become the world’s fifth largest by 2010 (1), making China an attractive place to do business for multinational pharmaceutical companies (MPCs). Rising living standards and improvements in China’s regulatory and technology infrastructure are the key drivers for this continued growth. Although all segments of the…

IP Strategies to Combat Distribution of Counterfeit Drugs

Counterfeit products are no longer restricted to Gucci purses and Rolex watches. The pharmaceutical business has seen an alarming rise in the number of counterfeit products entering traditional distribution and supply chains. As a result, consumers can unknowingly purchase counterfeit pharmaceuticals from their local pharmacy and receive little or no therapeutic benefit, or worse, die as a result of ingesting counterfeit products. Pharmaceuticals are subject to counterfeiting in a number of ways. A counterfeit product may contain no active ingredient…