Edited by David Castle
Chapter 18: Watch What You Export: The History of Medical Exceptions from Patentability
18. Watch what you export: the history of medical exceptions from patentability Tina Piper INTRODUCTION The analysis and implementation of intellectual property rights (IPRs) are often based on the assumption that IPRs will work similarly in different countries. For example, stated generally, patent protection which incentivizes innovation in the United States will spur innovation in the developing world. The export and implementation of IPRs may further rely on the notion that they are critical to the regulation of a particular industry or technology. Without the particular provision, useless or overbroad patents or no patents at all would be granted, unnecessarily blocking innovation and its commercialization. Both propositions rely on a common foundation. They presume that it is understood how and why particular IPRs function in the domestic regime. In fact, this may not often be the case. The patent law of the dominant law exporters (United States, United Kingdom, Europe) developed in response to local economic, political and social conditions. In addition, often limited work has been undertaken to understand the effect of particular provisions of the patent law under different political, social and economic conditions. This chapter presents a brief case-study of IPRs related to medical methods. Medical methods are an important exception to the general patentability of biotechnology subject matter. Medical methods are excluded from patentability by the patent laws of over 80 countries. Their exclusion is a common, almost automatic, feature in the harmonized, globalized intellectual property patent law world.1 While the medical exception purports to protect...
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
Elgaronline requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals. Please login through your library system or with your personal username and password on the homepage.
Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/ extracts and download selected front matter and introductory chapters for personal use.
Your library may not have purchased all subject areas. If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.