Japan Policy Panel Stalls On Drug Patents

Law360, New York (November 1, 2004, 12:00 AM EST) -- A policy panel that is preparing a planned overhaul of Japan’s intellectual property laws has yet to decide on the patentability of new uses for existing drugs and medical devices, according to local media.

At issue is whether "methods for having existing drugs express new effects" through new combinations of multiple drugs and new methods of administration should be eligible for patent protection.

Under the current patent regime in Japan, the discovery of new therapeutic or preventive effects by new drug combinations and adjustment of administration...
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