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Italy Orders Merck To Grant Free Licenses

Law360 (March 26, 2007, 12:00 AM EDT) -- Italy's antitrust watchdog has ordered Merck & Co. Inc. to hand out free licenses for its prostate medicine, in an effort to counterbalance the drug maker’s alleged abuse of its dominant position.

The order requires Merck and its Italian subsidiary, Merck Sharp & Dohme, to grant non-exclusive licenses for generic versions of Finasteride, which also treats baldness, two years before its exclusive license expires in 2009, the Italian Competition Authority decided on March 21.

The regulator chose to enforce free licenses rather than impose fines on...
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