Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP

01/16/2020 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 01/17/2020 16:34

Rachel Elsby Quoted in Law360 on Patent Provisions in U.S.-China Trade Deal

Akin Gump intellectual property partner Rachel Elsby has been quoted in the Law360 article 'US-China Deal's Patent Rules Will Boost Branded Drug Cos.' Elsby discusses different aspects of the trade deal signed this week by the United States and China that should-according to Law360-help the branded pharmaceutical industry by creating a system to resolve patent disputes over generic drugs before they enter the market.

The article reports that the agreement includes provisions that seek to import patent mechanisms from American law into China's system. Among these, are an analogue to Hatch-Waxman patent litigation, which allows drug patent owners to file patent infringement suits over planned generic versions of their products before the generic receives regulatory approval, as well as patent term extensions that lengthen the life of patents to make up for delays in patent examination and drug approval.

Elsby described the patent provisions as 'a positive first step.'

'We'll have to see what the teeth of this are, and whether pharmaceutical companies feel like their rights are really being enforced through these provisions, but certainly at first glance, we have an optimistic view that this is at least providing some protection for innovative pharma companies in the Chinese market,' she said.

Regarding the extension of a patent's term that is also included in the deal, Elsby said it is 'a positive development and something that I think pharmaceutical companies will be happy about.'