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Patenting Homeopathic Medicines

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					Because so many homeopathic medicaments have been in use for a very long
time, homeopathic medicine suppliers and practitioners don't always think
of patenting new formulations. However, homeopathic formulations are
patentable, and effective protection can be secured with a carefully
drafted application.Homeopathic medicaments are approved for use and
inclusion in the Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia by the Homeopathic
Pharmacopoeia Convention. A large number of medicaments were included in
the Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia because of their successful historical use.
However, new formulations are also being approved and added, and these
can be patented. Seeking patent protection is important because of the
significant research needed to find a particularly effective
formulation.A good patent application for a homeopathic medicament
includes a thorough description of the ingredients and their preparation,
a listing of the formulation variations and ranges, delivery methods, and
examples of successful use and other test results. The medicament should
then be claimed to distinguish it from earlier similar
formulations.Homeopathic medicines are often claimed in the form "A
medicament comprising a homeopathically potentised form of (the
ingredients and doses)." Additional claims are then added specifying
various formulations and variations of the ingredients and doses. The
ingredients will often appear in the formulations of other homeopathic
medicines. The Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia should be consulted to assure
that the proposed formulation is not too similar to prior formulations.
Most professional patent searchers and patent attorneys don't have this
particular expertise, so a homeopathic practitioner should be
consulted.In addition, a patent search should be performed, focusing on
the particular ingredients. This will uncover potentially similar uses of
the ingredients in non-homeopathic remedies such as herbal supplements.
The claims should be written to distinguish the new medicament from all
previous formulations.After the independent claims are written, a
description of the medicament should be drafted. The description should
include tables showing examples of formulation variations, ranges of
acceptable formulation variations, or both. These tables and ranges can
then be used to draft the dependent claims. The variations should include
both broad ranges of formulations as well as narrower ranges around well-
tested and successful formulations.The delivery method should also be
described. These methods may not be claimed, but it can be useful later
on to have mentioned the various internal and topical ways that the
medicament could be used.Finally, the application should include examples
of successful outcomes resulting from the use of the formulation or its
ingredients. These can include organized studies, successful uses by an
individual, and evidence of the efficacy of the ingredients outside of
the formulation. The patent office does not evaluate or approve clinical
effectiveness, but patent examiners like to see that there is a good
reason for patenting the formulation.By including claims that were
drafted with an eye to similar formulations, a good description of
variations, mention of delivery methods, and examples of successful use,
homeopathic medicaments can be successful protected.

				
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