John Callahan, a partner in Sughrue Mion’s Washington, D.C. office, was a key speaker at a six-day workshop in India attended by leading Indian pharmaceutical companies. The program focused on a range of topics and best practices in the U.S. and Europe, including claim drafting for pharmaceutical and biotechnology patent applications, the doctrine of equivalents, interferences, patentability and infringement issues relating to metabolites and intermediates, reexaminations and the written description requirement under 35 U.S.C §112, first paragraph, for pharmaceutical and biotechnology patent applications.
“Patent protection and patent enforcement are major issues for pharmaceutical manufacturers and developers in India. In addition, being able to sell drugs to U.S. consumers – which is clearly a huge economic market – requires a detailed understanding of U.S. patent laws,” said Mr. Callahan. “The fact that so many professionals spent six days getting an understanding of U.S. and European patent laws makes it clear that these companies are taking these issues very seriously.”
With scientists and health organizations around the world looking to ensure adequate supplies of key vaccines for a possible avian flu pandemic, licensing and patent issues – particularly those focused on the U.S. market – become even more important. Many pharmaceutical companies are investigating sublicenses with Roche, which holds the patent for Tamiflu, the most promising drug for treating avian flu. Knowing how to negotiate these types of licensing deals and create a commercial product is vitally important.
This was Mr. Callahan’s second year as a leader of the event, which was presented by the Technology Information Forecasting & Assessment Council (TIFAC) and the Institute of Intellectual Property Research & Practice. Mr. Callahan also lectured at the Orientation Program for Women Scientists of the Vishwakarma Bhavan Patent Facilitating Center of TIFAC, an intense program designed to give training in intellectual property law to women scientists in India.