BRUSSELS, 19 DECEMBER 2011: Today, Johnson & Johnson informed the Medicines Patent Pool of its decision not to license its HIV medicines patents for use in developing countries through the Pool.
The Pool, founded and financed by UNITAID, seeks to increase access to HIV medicines by negotiating with pharmaceutical companies for voluntary licences on their HIV medicines patents. The work of the Pool has received support from the World Health Organization, UNAIDS, the Global Fund to Fight HIV, TB, and Malaria, and the Group of 8.
Currently, the Pool has concluded two licensing agreements with Gilead Sciences and the US National Institutes of Health, and is also in negotiations with Boehringer-Ingelheim, Bristol-Myers Squibb, F. Hoffman LaRoche, Sequoia Pharmaceuticals, and Viiv Healthcare [a joint venture of GSK and Pfizer]. Generic companies have begun to take licences from the Pool allowing them to make lower cost versions of new HIV treatments for use in developing countries.