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Patent systems have existed in one form or another for a number of centuries. Australia's current patent system developed from the English system and the Statute of Monopolies of 1624 which established a legal system for the grant of patents for a maximum of fourteen years for any new 'manner of manufacture'.
The objective of the statute was to allow monopolies and curb abuses of monopoly power: monopolies were only to be granted in exchange for communicating the invention to the public and were for a finite period of time.16 Today, patents sit alongside a number of other government administered systems for supporting innovation, including tax incentives, direct government funding for R&D and prizes, awarded for solving specific problems.
Australian patent legislation is set out in the Patents Act 1990 and the Patents Regulations 1991. The legislation is largely technology neutral: providing for a twenty year patent to be granted in all fields of technology, subject to the requirements that the invention is novel, inventive and produces a useful product or effect. Patent specifications, which include the description of the invention and the claims that define the patent monopoly, are published soon after the patent application is filed. Despite the fact that patents are available for inventions in all technologies, it is arguable whether the patent system is of general benefit across the full range of technologies.
Where a technology is relatively inexpensive hydrocodone simplenames com to develop and can be quickly brought to market, innovators may be better served by simply entering the market quickly: recouping their costs through first mover advantage.
Specific edu buy soma hydrocodone industries and the public may also benefit through fewer patents impeding their freedom to operate. In this respect patents are a blunt instrument, with generally edu buy soma hydrocodone the same duration and extent edu buy soma dossage information on m0552 oxycodone hydrocodone of rights being granted regardless of the development costs or market size of the invention.
There is another weakness in the patent system: it might not stimulate innovation in certain areas of public interest because the commercial return, even after the grant of a patent, provides insufficient incentive. For example, pharmaceutical companies would be reluctant to invest considerable research funds for drugs for illnesses where the prospects of cost-recovery are small.
Patent protection is also a blunt instrument because a standard term patent is provided irrespective of the profitability of a particular invention or inventor. Some inventors might be able to recoup their costs edu buy soma hydrocodone quickly. Others might need a longer monopoly period than the patent system provides to become profitable. Opinions differ on the value of patenting in different industries, but there is general agreement that, of all the industries where patents are used, patents are of particular value for pharmaceuticals.17 Pharmaceuticals are an example of a technology where: •R&D costs are high; •the risks of failure, particularly at a late stage of the development process, are high; •the time between initial discovery and market entry is long; and •products have traditionally been relatively easy to reverse engineer.
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