New Canadian rules to delay big generics

Generics makers are up in arms over proposed patent rules in Canada. The drug copycats say the rules will delay generic Lipitor and several other blockbusters by as much as two years. (Can you hear Pfizer cheering that idea?) And they say the new rules are nothing but a sop to brand-name drugmakers.

The government says it's simply trying to put the worms back into the can after two court rulings unexpectedly curbed the practice of "evergreening," otherwise known as "filing new patents on a drug to keep generics away." Canada's Industry Minister's office says that the new regulations would uphold government policy as it was before the court rulings. "We need predictable and stable intellectual property laws" to remain attractive to international investment, a spokeswoman said.

- read the story in the National Post

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