Evergreening

Evergreening is any of various legal, business, and technological strategies by which producers (often pharmaceutical companies) extend the lifetime of their patents that are about to expire in order to retain revenues from them. Often the practice includes taking out new patents (for example over associated delivery systems or new pharmaceutical mixtures), or by buying out or frustrating competitors, for longer periods of time than would normally be permissible under the law.[1] Robin Feldman, a law professor at UC Hastings and a leading researcher in intellectual property and patents, defines evergreening as "artificially extending the life of a patent or other exclusivity by obtaining additional protections to extend the monopoly period."[2]


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