Saturday, November 26, 2005

Indonesia to produce Tamiflu

On Nov. 25, 2005, Roche said Indonesia could produce Tamiflu on the condition it did not export it.

"Tamiflu does not have patent protection in Indonesia," Roche spokesman Baschi Duerr said from the company's headquarters in Switzerland. "Indonesia is therefore free to produce Tamiflu as long as the product is distributed only in the domestic market."

Bob Park noted the following in WN:

President Bush went to Congress early this month to ask for $7B to prepare the nation for a possible outbreak of Asian bird flu (WN 4 Nov 05) . The federal government has since become the world's biggest customer for Tamiflu, produced by the Swiss pharmaceutical giant, Roche. That was good news for Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld, who doesn't have bird flu. He doesn't have stock in Roche either, but he does have millions of dollars worth of stock in a company named Gilead Sciences, having been Gilead's Chairman prior to joining the Bush administration. Low-profile Gilead Sciences owns the rights to Tamiflu, which it outsources to Roche. There is little evidence that the antiviral drug would help much in a flu pandemic.

To be clear, Gilead is the patentee, and has licensed exclusively to Roche Holdings.


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