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Patent Law and Supplements

Almost 75% of U.S. clinical trials in medicine are paid for by private companies.  In the drug industry, these private companies are largely pharmaceutical companies.  However, because natural supplements are harder to patent, we see a paucity of clinical trials/studies of natural products compared to pharmaceutical drugs. (Big pharma doesn’t want to pump money into research of a product they can’t potentially “own” via patent).

This is a double-edged sword—-while the consumer has  easier access to supplements, they are often 1. more expensive for out-of-pocket costs (western medicine skepticism and clinical based medicine make insurance coverage sparse, if not completely non-existent, for supplements) and 2. more unpredictable in best mode of use and results achieved.

Thoughts on how to balance the incentive to invest in patentable drugs versus investing in natural (non-patentable) products that harness many health benefits?
How to increase funding for research on recreational drugs that show promising results as therapeutic modalities (e.g. MDMA (“molly”) for treating post-traumatic stress disorder)?

Also check out this article on “Regulating Supplements”…via Regulating Supplements.