The Medicines Patent Pool

The Medicines Patent Pool negotiates licenses to allow generic manufacturers to make medicines for HIV, tuberculosis and hepatitis C. Here, a patient suffering from multidrug-resistant tuberculosis holds his MDR-TB pills in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire (Image: The Global Fund)

Enabling access to affordable, high-quality HIV, hepatitis C and tuberculosis medicines for developing countries.

Challenges

Patents are intended to reward innovation. However, they can also limit rapid access to novel treatments by making them unaffordable in resource-constrained settings.

Solutions

The Medicines Patent Pool (MPP) negotiates with patent holders for licences on HIV, hepatitis C and tuberculosis medicines. These licences permit low-cost manufacturers to produce and distribute generic versions of patented medicines in developing countries. Licences also provide the freedom to develop new treatments better suited for resource-limited settings, such as paediatric formulations and fixed-dose combinations. Competition among many manufacturers also brings prices down. MPP is entirely funded by Unitaid.

“MPP’s success is a direct result of partnering with a range of stakeholders – industry, civil society, governments, patient groups and international organizations – to meet the common objective of increasing access and innovation in HIV, hepatitis C and tuberculosis treatment”

Greg Perry, Executive Director, Medicines Patent Pool

Progress so far

MPP has delivered significant results since its creation in 2010. Licensing agreements have been signed with eight patent holders for 12 antiretroviral drugs, one hepatitis C antiviral, one tuberculosis treatment and a HIV technology platform.

Sub-licensing agreements have been signed with 15 generic suppliers.

As of June 2016, savings generated by the MPP’s work amounted to US $239 million.
More than 3 billion tablets – equivalent to 9.1 million treatment years – have been supplied by MPP sub-licensees to people living with HIV in 121 countries.

The impact we are seeking

The ultimate impact of MPP is to increase the speed and scale of access to the most innovative medicines, by improving their affordability.



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