Professor Erika Lietzan recently attended the 2017 Summer Institute, hosted by the Center for the Protection of Intellectual Property at Antonin Scalia Law School, George Mason University.
She presented “The Drug Innovation Paradox,” which will be published by the Missouri Law Review next year, explains that the United States has chosen to incentivize drug innovation with a period of exclusive marketing after drug approval, but that as the research and development timeline increases in length, the post-approval reward remains the same or decreases in length. Her paper presents extensive historical and empirical research showing that the length of any particular research program turns on factors largely outside the control of the drug company and, more importantly, that particular types of drugs (for particular types of conditions) consistently take longer. Consequently, she argues, we may not be offering enough incentive for research in particular areas of need.
She also participated in a panel, “The Challenges of Encouraging Long Term Innovation,” in which she presented some of her ongoing work relating to solving the drug innovation paradox, for instance through changes to the drug regulatory paradigm and, possibly, further changes to U.S. patent law.