News of the WeekDRUG PATENTS

Universities, NIH Hear the Price Isn't Right on Essential Drugs

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Science  27 Apr 2001:
Vol. 292, Issue 5517, pp. 614-615
DOI: 10.1126/science.292.5517.614

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The University of Minnesota is in the middle of an international debate over whether the public should get back some of the profits generated by biomedical research it has funded. A major driving force has been the cost and availability of AIDS drugs in developing countries--an issue on which advocates of limiting drug profits claimed a victory last week in South Africa. And the U.S. National Institutes of Health is being drawn reluctantly into the fray by a congressional directive to identify big moneymaking drugs derived from NIH-funded research.