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Brazil bypasses patent on U.S. AIDS drug

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JackBeck Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-04-07 02:34 PM
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Brazil bypasses patent on U.S. AIDS drug
BRASILIA, Brazil - President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva took steps Friday to let Brazil buy an inexpensive generic version of an AIDS drug made by Merck & Co. despite the U.S. drug company's patent.

Silva issued a "compulsory license" that would bypass Merck's patent on the AIDS drug efavirenz, a day after the Brazilian government rejected Merck's offer to sell the drug at a 30 percent discount, or $1.10 per pill, down from $1.57.

The country was seeking to purchase the drug at 65 cents a pill, the same price Thailand pays.

It was the first time Brazil has bypassed a patent, but Silva said Brazil would consider doing so again on any drug sold at unfair prices. "Between our business and our health, we are going to take care of our health," he said after signing the decree.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070504/ap_on_he_me/brazil_...

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Merck's statement is :puke:
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