Writer out to Defend Intellectual Property, Research, Not His Wallet

The Washington Times (Washington, DC), December 21, 1999 | Go to article overview

Writer out to Defend Intellectual Property, Research, Not His Wallet


Steve Appel's response to my Dec. 6 Op-Ed column, "The cost of research," makes some statements and accusations that require a response on my part. In his letter to the editor ("Consumers pay a heavy price under the guise of research and development," Dec. 13), Mr. Appel writes that I have "made a healthy living off brand industry handouts" and appears to be attempting to besmirch me and my reputation, implying that I am simply a "hired gun," like himself. (His organization is supported by generic companies, which benefit from the research conducted by others.) During my academic career I have received little support from pharmaceutical companies and have never been commissioned by any organization - except the generic industry - to perform any policy-related analysis.

I do not act as a lobbyist for any firm, but as an advocate for the protection of intellectual property rights and the need to fund research. Mr. Appel quotes from a study performed by the University of Minnesota that claims patent extension for certain drugs would cost consumers $11 billion.

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Writer out to Defend Intellectual Property, Research, Not His Wallet
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