Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Radical proposal to speed development of stem cell therapies

28.02.2006


The proliferation of patents in the emerging stem cell field may impede scientists from developing new treatments, says Merrill Goozner of the Center for Science in the Public Interest in the open access journal PLoS Medicine.



Patent restrictions on the use of stem cells, says Goozner, can discourage researchers from pursuing a particular line of inquiry and can slow the pace of research.

Funders of stem cell research, such as the newly created California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM), which is authorized to spend $3bn to support human stem cell research, could become the catalyst for “cutting through this patent thicket.”


Goozner argues that CIRM could require that all grant recipients agree to donate the exclusive license to any insights, materials and technologies they patent to a common, open source patent pool administered by a new, non-profit organization. “A patent pool serves as a one-stop shop where investigators can obtain no-cost or low-cost licenses for subsequent research.”

Such patent pools have been successfully used in other high tech industries, such as consumer electronics, to facilitate development of new technologies that require either common standards or rest on a common base of basic research.

While open source patent pools should stimulate innovation in human stem cell research, there is still a major stumbling block to ensuring that the resulting stem cell therapies are affordable to the public. Once the research has identified a potentially useful product, it can be costly to carry out the clinical trials needed to bring the product to market, so it is typically the private sector that funds these trials.

“The private sector’s price for taking these late stage risks,” says Goozner, “is exclusive rights to the technology. Its reward, if successful, is the right to charge whatever the healthcare marketplace will bear.”

Goozner proposes a radical alternative to the “exclusive rights/high prices” model used by conventional markets: “A government body such as CIRM could establish a major prize for the companies and institutions that collaborate to produce a successful stem cell therapy.” Governments could finance this prize using tax-exempt bonds; the bonds could be repaid by a surcharge on each use of the new therapy as it rapidly diffuses through the health care system.

By combining a patent pool with a shared prize system for developing stem cell therapies, says Goozner, the California state stem cell program can point the way to a new medical innovation system for the 21st century.

Andrew Hyde | alfa
Further information:
http://www.plosmedicine.org/

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Water world
20.11.2017 | Washington University in St. Louis

nachricht Carefully crafted light pulses control neuron activity
20.11.2017 | University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: A “cosmic snake” reveals the structure of remote galaxies

The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.

Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...

Im Focus: Visual intelligence is not the same as IQ

Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.

That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...

Im Focus: Novel Nano-CT device creates high-resolution 3D-X-rays of tiny velvet worm legs

Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.

During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....

Im Focus: Researchers Develop Data Bus for Quantum Computer

The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.

Future quantum computers will be able to solve problems where conventional computers fail today. We are still far away from any large-scale implementation,...

Im Focus: Wrinkles give heat a jolt in pillared graphene

Rice University researchers test 3-D carbon nanostructures' thermal transport abilities

Pillared graphene would transfer heat better if the theoretical material had a few asymmetric junctions that caused wrinkles, according to Rice University...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Ecology Across Borders: International conference brings together 1,500 ecologists

15.11.2017 | Event News

Road into laboratory: Users discuss biaxial fatigue-testing for car and truck wheel

15.11.2017 | Event News

#Berlin5GWeek: The right network for Industry 4.0

30.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Water world

20.11.2017 | Life Sciences

Less is more to produce top-notch 2D materials

20.11.2017 | Materials Sciences

Carefully crafted light pulses control neuron activity

20.11.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>