Monday, January 23, 2006

Rival IP Proposal From Watchdog Groups

No blank check for biotech – that's the rallying cry of the Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights and the California Nurses Association and their position on intellectual property issues involving the California stem cell agency.

Reporter Terri Somers of the San Diego Union Tribune wrote about the organizations' proposals this morning and noted that some are similar to what the agency is considering in its draft.

Here is a summary from the press release by the foundation and the nurses association. The full text can be found here. The stem cell agency will consider its IP policies at a meeting this afternoon at Stanford.

"Research institutions that get CIRM funds should pay the state at least 25 percent of net royalties in excess of $100,000 received for any invention or discovery developed with Prop 71 funds.

"The state's share of any royalties would be used to help fund access to Prop. 71 therapies for people who cannot afford it.

"The licensees of discoveries developed with Prop. 71 funds must sell any resulting drugs, therapies or products to the state at their lowest price.

"The stem cell institute would create a patent pool that would include all patents resulting from research it funds. A three-person board including the California Attorney General would govern the pool.

"The institute would be able to tell an applicant that no patent is possible for a particular project if it determines that keeping the expected results in the public domain best promotes further research.

"Any California-based researcher would be able to use the results of Prop. 71-funded research for further research without paying a licensing fee.

"The California Attorney General would have march-in rights -- the ability to intervene -- if a drug or therapy were priced unreasonably or any other public benefit requirement is not met.

"The institute would have the responsibility to take control of new therapies for public health and safety reasons. For instance, meeting the public need of getting vaccines to market.

"All investors and researchers involved in commercial enterprises resulting from Prop. 71-funded research would be required to file disclosure forms. These would be public records."

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