Saturday, December 23, 2017

ID Pharma fishes in troubled waters, while Kyoto University requests Fujifilm Corp for reduction of licensing fee on iPS cell-related patents

It was reported that iPS Academia Japan, which manages iPS cell-related patent portfolio of Kyoto University, lowered the patent royalty rate for regenerative medicine from 2% to 1.5% of sales of related products. iPS Academia Japan has so far signed patent license agreements with more than 170 entities worldwide. It is attempting,  by reduction of patent royalty rate, to increase companies which enter into regenerative medicine market.

It was also reported that Dr. Yamanaka, a Japanese Nobel Prize-winning stem cell researcher and Director of Center for iPS Cells Research and Application at Kyoto University, requested Fujifilm to reduce licensing fee for the key patents for producing transplanted cells which are owned by Cellular Dynamics International (CDI), a Fujifilm’s subsidiary. Dr. Yamanaka argues that the iPS cell business contributes to the public good, thus the cost should not be raised.

Further, Kyoto University reportedly began to consider another production method, as a bargaining chip in negotiations with Fujifilm. Currently, it is adopting a production method using DNA of Escherichia coli, and concerns the risk of patent infringement of CDI. So, it is considering an alternative method using a type of virus which is patented by ID Pharma, I’rom Group Co., Ltd. 

Fujifilm used to conduct a joint research with Kyoto University on Alzheimer's Dementia medication in 2014, but after that, it acquired CDI in May 2015. It is unknown whether Fujifilm has any reasons to accept the request from Kyoto University. Also, it is unknown how ID Pharma sets licensing fee. Its paretent company I’rom Group jumped in stock price, in response to this news story.

The following are possible patents Kyoto University concerns. Please note that Kyoto University does not disclose specific patents.

CDI’s related patents
JP5897002 (PCT/US2011/043218)
JP5968871 (PCT/US2011/032309)
JP6005666 (PCT/US2012/024098)

ID Pharma’s related patents
JP5856949 (PCT/JP2011/059429)
JP5908838 (PCT/JP2011/069588)

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