Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Conducting A Drug Patent FTO Search

From development to the entry of a drug in the market, there are various stages in the way. A well-defined stray is required to see how the product in demand will work in the coming days plus it helps in minimizing risks. Now, in the pharmaceutical industry, whenever you try to market your drug, other companies will work to point the technologies you have used which they have already patented. According to a patent attorney in India sometimes the patent can be blocked after such objections. 

Permission from the owner is required before bringing the product into the market. To avoid such situations, it is necessary for the companies to conduct freedom to operate searches. An FTO search is done to ensure that the patents, copyrights, and trademarks of others are not used without permission. According to it, the commercialization of your drug should not affect the rights of other people's intellectual property.

The motive behind conducting FTO search 

An FTO search can be performed for various reasons. Here are some of the essential benefits of performing freedom to operate searches. 
➥If technology is already patented, patent infringement might occur which will bring problems. 
➥The search is done to check if the technology used by you in the product you are going to commercialize. If some other company has already patented any technology, they can block the path of the patent. 
➥Some patents that come forward during the process might seem unnecessary from the commercialization point of view, but the technology needs to work without violating those. This prevents the infringement of patents.

The best time to conduct FTO search

 A number of factors need to be considered to decide the right time to perform such searches. Let's understand it by examining the stages of commercialization of technology. If we look at the very first stage or the early stages where the technology is in a premature form, and the future couldn't be decided, we see that FTO search done at that time will become useless in future. There is no use of such searches at an early stage because the risks will not be adequately evaluated and the search would not be applicable in the future. The reason for this is because the requirement of the product in the market and this will lead to more significant differences.

However, if you are thinking to perform an FTO search when the project is on its final stage that is also not a good idea, it will be tough for you to make changes in the product when it is in the matured stage. The best time to conduct such services is the average time when it is not too early and not too late.

Getting over the basic challenges

If more than one company is restricting the FTO search of your firm, you need to spend some time analyzing whether you actually want to move forward or not. If yes, then how? If the abandoning patent is valid, here are some of the things you can do to move forward 

1. Buy or license a patent

Sometimes the patent holder may not have proper manufacturing facility or the available facilities may not be sufficient or he wishes to concentrate on some specific market. In these cases, the patent holder can sell the invention.

2. Cross-licensing 

It works on mutual sharing. Two companies mutually share the licenses they own. There can be more than two companies too, and the process involves exchanging licenses to use each other's patent.

3. Patent pools

Here two companies can use the same license without bearing any extra expenses linked to R&D. The patent is placed in a “pool,” and the patent rights are cleared. 

4. Inventing around

This includes making some arrangements in the product when any company restricts the FTO search. 


FTO searches are of great benefit when done in the right way. Use of perfect strategy, correct information, and references can make the FTO search productive and helpful for you. It helps in reducing risks by opting out any of the methods mentioned above. 

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