R&D Based Pharmaceutical Companies Vs. Generic Companies: A False Dichotomy?

Sharon Reiche, Corporate Counsel, Intellectual Property Policy, Pfizer Inc, USA
Sharon Reiche, Corporate Counsel, Intellectual Property Policy, Pfizer Inc, USA

As recently as a decade ago, there was a clear line separating R&D-based pharmaceutical companies and generic companies; on one side were innovator pharmaceutical companies focused on developing innovative new medicines, and on the other were generic companies focused on copying those medicines once they lost exclusivity. That clear division, however, has become blurred in recent years. Due to various factors, many innovative pharmaceutical companies are seeking new revenue opportunities by either cultivating an in-house generics business or partnering with generic companies to manufacture their branded products; generic companies, which primarily focused on generic medicine production, are increasingly beginning to recognize the benefits of innovation and the more lucrative market for these products. The question then becomes, are partnerships/collaborations among the two industries and these ‘hybrid’ pharmas now the way of the future? And if so, can this new model, supported by a strong intellectual property framework, be used to spur local innovation in emerging markets to tackle the burden of diseases endemic to these countries?

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USA Intellectual Property Pharmaceutical April 2012 Vol. 5, No. 19, Spring 2012

Sharon Reiche

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Sharon Reiche is Corporate Counsel, Intellectual Property Policy, at Pfizer Inc. In her role as Corporate Counsel she works on IP policies that advance the protection of Pfizer’s substantial investment in research and development. She holds a BS from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and a J.D. from Brooklyn Law School.

Sharon Reiche

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Sharon Reiche is Corporate Counsel, Intellectual Property Policy, at Pfizer Inc. In her role as Corporate Counsel she works on IP policies that advance the protection of Pfizer’s substantial investment in research and development. She holds a BS from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and a J.D. from Brooklyn Law School.

Pfizer Inc

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At Pfizer, we apply science and our global resources to improve health and well-being at every stage of life. We strive to set the standard for quality, safety and value in the discovery, development and manufacturing of medicines for people and animals. Our diversified global health care portfolio includes human and animal biologic and small molecule medicines and vaccines, as well as nutritional products and many of the world’s best-known consumer products. Every day, Pfizer colleagues work across developed and emerging markets to advance wellness, prevention, treatments and cures that challenge the most feared diseases of our time. Consistent with our responsibility as the world’s leading biopharmaceutical company, we also collaborate with health care providers, governments and local communities to support and expand access to reliable, affordable health care around the world. For more than 150 years, Pfizer has worked to make a difference for all who rely on us. To learn more about our commitments, please visit us at www.pfizer.com.

USA Intellectual Property Pharmaceutical April 2012 Vol. 5, No. 19, Spring 2012