Top of the Morning: Novartis Loses Drug Patent Battle in India; For Syria, March Was the Cruelest Month

Top stories from DAWNS Digest

Novartis Loses Landmark Drug Patent Battle in India

India’s supreme court rejected the drug makers attempt to patent a new cancer drug, in a precedent that could prevent drug manufacturers from getting a patent on certain kinds of drugs “Novartis had argued that it needed a patent to protect its investment in the cancer drug Glivec, while activists said the company was trying to use a loophole to make more money out of a drug that did not have a patent. The decision has global significance since India’s $26 billion generic drug industry supplies much of the cheap medicine used in the developing world.” (Yahoo!

For Syria, March Was the Cruelest Month

We are fast approaching six figure territory for the number of people killed in this conflict. “More than 6,000 people died in Syria in March, the deadliest month since protests against the government began two years ago, activists say. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR), a UK-based activist group, said it recorded 6,005 deaths last month. It said victims included at least 291 women, 298 children, 1,486 rebel fighters and army defectors, and 1,464 government troops.” (BBC