When patents expire on a patented drug product, paving the way for generic competition, the patentee is faced with the challenge of how to replace the revenues that were achieved with the patented product. Ideally, the company’s innovation during the patented product’s life cycle will have led to new products poised to grow as the old patented product’s revenues decline. Often, however, the company’s strategy is to pursue a “product switch,” in which the patented product is replaced with a new product that provides little or no therapeutic improvement but for which no generic competition is imminent.
Asking how much it costs to get a patent in Canada is a bit like asking how long a piece of string is. The answer, of course, depends on many different factors, but there are a number of general guidelines that can be used to anticipate likely costs that will be incurred over the lifetime of a patent.