LAPaL – the long-acting technologies patents and licences database
The long-acting technologies patents and licences database LAPaL is a free online resource coordinated by the Medicines Patent Pool with support from Unitaid, that provides information on technical features and intellectual property status of selected long-acting technologies and their potential applications, in particular, in the fields of HIV, viral hepatitis, tuberculosis and malaria.
LAPaL builds on MPP’s ten-year experience in mapping patents on key health technologies through MedsPaL, the world’s leading tool on the patent status of essential medicines in low- and middle-income countries.
Q&A on LAPaL
The long-acting technologies patents and licences database LAPaL is a free online resource coordinated by the Medicines Patent Pool, that provides information on technical features and intellectual property status of selected long-acting technologies and their potential applications, in particular, in the fields of HIV, viral hepatitis, tuberculosis and malaria.
LAPaL aims to facilitate collaborations in the long-acting space and advocate for access to long-acting therapeutics with potential public health benefit, by fostering development opportunities for fit-for purpose technologies to be used by all those needing them, everywhere, including in resource-limited settings.
For each technology, innovators are invited to review a set of access principles that will reinforce access opportunities throughout a technology development, manufacturing, and distribution life cycle.
These access principles set the ground for reinforced collaboration for long-acting product candidates’ development, encourage sharing of technical data to achieve public health benefits and support the establishment of appropriate strategies for timely and affordable access in low- and middle-income countries, including through licensing.
Innovators may show their commitment level by indicating their agreement to each of these principles. This commitment is shown as colour variations on their technology card in LAPaL indicating that the innovator agrees, does not agree, or agrees under certain conditions to the proposed access principles.
LAPaL includes information on selected long-acting technologies main characteristics and an overview of their intellectual property landscape. Where possible, the data are backed by scientific publications and insights are provided by the innovators as factsheets, corporate presentations, or other media of interest to LAPaL audience.
The long-acting technologies patents and licences database LAPaL is a collaborative platform, where publicly available information is gathered by MPP with the support of the innovators. The information is then curated, and innovators are invited to fact-check and update their technologies profiles.
Every person interested in long-acting technologies and their applications for public health might benefit from LAPaL’s content. User groups include affected communities and possible clients, researchers in academia, biotechs and pharmaceutical companies, manufacturers, caregivers, clinicians and health professionals, policy makers, procurement agencies, funders, and innovative potentially life-saving technologies supporters.
LAPaL is a non-exhaustive source of information on long-acting platform technologies in a disease-agnostic approach. When a platform technology is being developed in association with a therapeutic agent or agents, these are listed as potential applications.
Initially, LAPaL is focusing on long-acting technologies that have foreseen applications with potential impact for global health. The scope is therefore wide, although initially prioritising technologies with applications to relieve health conditions in line with MPP and Unitaid historic mandates: HIV, tuberculosis, hepatitis and malaria prevention and treatment. A particular attention is given to multi-purpose technologies targeting for example HIV and another viral infection or HIV and pregnancy.
In its next iteration, LAPaL will encompass not only long-acting platforms, but also candidate long-acting agents. This expansion will be conducted in collaboration with LEAP, with support from Unitaid.
LAPaL includes information on long-acting platform technologies and their potential applications, at any stage of development.
As a long-acting technology developer, you can submit your technology to LAPaL, or we will reach out to you to fact-check your technology profile that we would have put together using publicly available information. You will have the opportunity to provide information about the technology properties, development stage, potential applications and the most relevant patents and licences.
If you are curious about long-acting technologies, LAPaL might be a go-to resource for you, whether you are a tech innovator or not. All LAPaL users are welcome to contribute to this collaborative tool. We will be happy to hear your thoughts and discuss your proposals to help us improve the database content, looks and features.
A long-acting technology with potential public health benefit might end up in LAPaL either through direct submission by the innovator or through MPP curation and reach out to innovator for support in submission. In both cases, we envisage a close collaboration with the innovator to ensure they are associated to all relevant updates to their technologies.
In some cases, we may identify a particularly important technology from a public health perspective, but we may face challenges in involving the innovators in the data collection and updating process. If this occurs, we will upload the technology profile and flag it as “MPP-sourced” until the innovator fact-checks it.
If you would like to submit your long-acting technology to LAPaL, you will need to create a user account that will be associated with that technology. You will then be guided through a twenty questions online form to provide information related to:
- General aspects of the technology: name, main developer, description and highlights, route(s) of administration, technology type, additional features, main components, excipients if any, delivery devices if any, APIs compatibility profile, scale-up and manufacturing prospects, and a technology picture or illustration.
- Potential applications: compatible candidate medicines, therapeutic areas of application and envisaged use of the technology
- Patent and licences information that your institution is willing to disclose
- Publications and other supporting information
- Partnerships and sponsors
To start the submission process and creating a technology card, click on “submit a technology” tab on LAPaL and create an account or use an existing account. If you need to reset your password, please check the spam folder in case the verification email is delayed.
LAPaL is coordinated by MPP, a United Nations-backed public health organisation working to increase access to, and facilitate the development of, life-saving medicines for low- and middle-income countries. Funding for this database as well as for MPP’s work in the long-acting space is secured through a Unitaid grant.
MPP would like to acknowledge the technical support from:
- the Center of Excellence of Long-acting Therapeutics (CELT) based at the University of Liverpool
- the Long-acting/Extended release Antiretroviral Research Resource Program (LEAP)
- the Initiative for Multipurpose Technologies (IMPT)
Furthermore, we are grateful to all the innovators and stakeholders who have provided data and advice to enrich the repository and who are putting in their best efforts to advance the long-acting technologies pipeline with access considerations as an integral part of the work. The platform was built by MobileThinking in Geneva.
Every technology has its own “technology card” with the name of the technology and its main developer, as well as an illustration. The “Summary” button allows for a shortcut to an overview of the technology main features as well as to the Access Principles commitment from the innovator.
For a more detailed view, the “see more” button will take the user to a dedicated page with various tabs related to the technology. These tabs cover:
- Technical information
- Potential applications of the technology
- Patent and licences information
- Supporting material
- Access principles commitment level from the innovator
- Main partnerships and sponsors in the context of the technology and candidate products development (past or ongoing)
LAPaL provides a non-exhaustive list of patents related to the technology and potential application products when the latter are available in MedsPaL. The information about these patents and licences are shown in LAPaL as a summary table indicating whether patents relate to the technology or to its potential applications.
For each patent family, an abstract is provided, and the country patent applications are listed. LAPaL patent descriptions may be reformulated by MPP and may not be the official descriptions appearing in patent documents.
LAPaL builds on MPP’s experience in mapping patents on key health technologies through MedsPaL. MedsPaL is MPP’s patents and licences database for medicines. It provides information on the patent and licensing status of patented essential medicines in low- and middle-income countries.
LAPaL administrators use the information provided by the innovators on the most relevant patents and licences related to their technology (one representative publication per family). This information is used to map equivalent patents and patent applications worldwide as well as their latest status.
When a technology is “MPP sourced”, the search for relevant patents will be performed in-house.
When potential applications with APIs are listed by the innovators, a second list is created with the most relevant patents and licences related to this API.
Moreover, when a licence agreement related to the technology or the potential APIs to be potentially used with it has been signed, this is highlighted and a link to the licence is provided.
If the API is already included in MedsPaL, the patent data for this API will be retrieved from MedsPaL.
An important difference with the patent and licensing information provided in MedsPaL, is that it not only includes information for low and middle-income countries as defined by the World Bank, for which patent data could be obtained, but also high-level information on high-income countries status.
LAPaL can be browsed by clicking on a given “technology card”. If you are looking for a specific technology or product, you can use the LAPaL search engine by technology name or by developer (the option to search by potential matching agents will be added soon). Another possibility is to select various options in the drop-down menus of the technology characteristics on the left bar. For a more comfortable user experience, a keywords pool tab is shown at the top of the screen, to fine-tune search criteria.
In each technology card, there is an export button that will generate a PDF for the given technology. You also have the possibility to print the tech card, but please be mindful of the climate.
Absolutely. LAPaL is designed to operate on major platforms including portable devices. Please let us know if you face any difficulty. In such case, do not hesitate to send screenshots of the bug.
LAPaL has a news section that is regularly aggregated into a newsletter. If you are interested to receive LAPaL updates, please subscribe to the newsletter through the “news” tab on LAPaL. Unfortunately, the newsletter sometimes lands in the spam folder, so please also check that one from time to time or whitelist the “@medicinespatentpool.org” domain.
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Users should NOT consider LAPaL a complete and authoritative source of information. The patents landscape for each technology is not intended as a ‘freedom-to-operate’ analysis. LAPaL only provides a snapshot at a point in time, based on the information available to MPP. The technical information provided is based on publicly available information, should not be considered as exhaustive and may have lapsed.
All MedsPaL disclaimers apply to LAPaL patent information. In particular, we do not accept any legal responsibility for the accuracy of data. We do not guarantee it is complete, up to date or fit for specific purposes. Users should undertake additional country searches and legal analysis before making any procurement or business decision based on the patent landscape.
A full understanding of the patent situation in any country, for a specific technology or agent, requires additional information and analysis not provided in LAPaL. This includes an analysis of the specific claims of a national/regional patent application or granted patent. Users should also consider whether the country is a Least Developed Country (LDC) and may benefit from the transition period provided by the World Trade Organization TRIPS Agreement, or whether the country is making use of any of the other flexibilities available under national or international regulations.
We would like to acknowledge the support and technical assistance from the following organisations and groups:
- Center of Excellence of Long-acting Therapeutics (CELT)
- Long-acting/Extended release Antiretroviral Research Resource Program (LEAP)
- Initiative for Multipurpose Technologies (IMPT)
We would also like to thank the innovators who have kindly contributed to the database and to the users providing their valuable feedback.