quarta-feira, abril 13, 2005

Sanofi não pede patente para medicamento contra malária

Sanofi to Sell Cheap Malaria Drug

French Company Decides Against Patent Protection; Reducing Number of Deaths

April 8, 2005; Page B3

Sanofi-Aventis SA plans to launch an inexpensive and easy-to-use malaria drug that could help reduce the number of deaths caused by the disease, especially in Africa.

The French drug maker said it intends to sell the drug on a no-profit basis and won't seek patent protection for it. These steps could encourage manufacturers to produce copycat versions of the drug and make the drug more easily available in poorer countries. The new antimalarial is being developed by Sanofi and its partner, Drugs for Neglected Diseases Initiative, a non profit umbrella group whose members include several health-related organizations. It will be launched next year.

Critics long have complained that pharmaceutical companies don't do enough to make patented drugs affordable to poor countries that are overwhelmed by AIDS and other killer diseases. Sanofi's decision to sell the new drug at cost was a direct response to that criticism, said Philippe Baetz, a Sanofi executive overseeing the effort to improve access to drugs in developing countries.

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