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Indian Supreme Court rejects Novartis’s appeal on drug patent

BMJ 2013; 346 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.f2099 (Published 02 April 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;346:f2099
  1. Sophie Arie
  1. 1London

India’s highest court has rejected efforts by the Swiss drug firm Novartis to patent its anticancer drug imatinib mesilate (marketed as Glivec) in the latest in a series of rulings in favour of India’s generic drug industry.

After a seven year legal battle the Supreme Court ruled that the drug was only an updated version of an existing one and as such was not innovative enough to merit a patent.

The ruling is seen as a crucial victory for manufacturers of generic drugs in the battle for India’s large and fast growing market. It means that …

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