On July 7, 2020, Knowledge Ecology International (KEI) submitted comments to the Federal Register notice for the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) “Prospective Grant of an Exclusive Patent License: Development and Commercialization of Fenoterol and Certain Fenoterol Analogues for the Treatment of Cancer” (85 FR 37464). The technology is to be licensed on an exclusive basis to Paz Pharmaceuticals, LLC.
While a website for Paz Pharmaceuticals cannot be located, a search returns a possible address for the company offices as a residence: that of Irving W. Wainer, who is listed as the inventor for the patents to be licensed. Wainer also appears to be, or was until very recently, an employee of the NIH’s National Institute on Aging. Wainer is listed as inventor on patents during his tenure at the NIH for which he is now slated to receive an exclusive, worldwide license to his private company. In commenting on NIH licenses, KEI regularly highlights and pushes back against the NIH’s lack of transparency. In a case such as this, when licensing patents to its own employees, the NIH should have an even higher standard of transparency.
The field of use for the license concerns the “development, manufacture, distribution, sale and use for the treatment of cancer of one or more of fenoterol and its analogues, either in combination or not in combination with one or more other therapeutic agents.”
A PDF copy of the full comments is available here: KEI_Comments_NIH_License_Paz_Pharmaceuticals_7July2020