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Determination of Regulatory Review Period for Purposes of Patent Extension; Uvasorb HA88

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Food and Drug Administration, HHS.




The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has determined the regulatory review period for Uvasorb HA88 and is publishing this notice of that determination as required by law. FDA has made the determination because of the submission of an application to the Commissioner of Patents and Trademarks, Department of Commerce, for the extension of a patent that claims that food additive.


Submit written comments and petitions to the Dockets Management Branch (HFA-305), Food and Drug Administration, 5630 Fishers Lane, rm. 1061, Rockville, MD 20852.

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Claudia V. Grillo, Regulatory Policy Staff (HFD-007), Food and Drug Administration, 5600 Fishers Lane, Rockville, MD 20857, 301-594-5645.

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The Drug Price Competition and Patent Term Restoration Act of 1984 (Public Law 98-417) and the Generic Animal Drug and Patent Term Restoration Act (Public Law 100-670) generally provide that a patent may be extended for a period of up to 5 years as long as the patented item (human drug product, animal drug product, medical device, food additive, or color additive) was subject to regulatory review by FDA before the item was marketed. Under these acts, a product's regulatory review period forms the basis for determining the amount of extension an applicant may receive.

A regulatory review period consists of two periods of time: A testing phase and an approval phase. For food additives, the testing phase begins when a major health or environmental effects test involving the food additive begins and runs until the approval phase begins. The approval phase starts with the initial submission of a petition requesting the issuance of a regulation for use of the food additive and continues until FDA grants permission to market the food additive product. Although only a portion of a regulatory review period may count toward the actual amount of extension that the Commissioner of Patents and Trademarks may award (for example, half the testing phase must be subtracted, as well as any time that may have occurred before the patent was issued), FDA's determination of the length of a regulatory review period for a food additive will include all of the testing phase and approval phase as specified in 35 U.S.C. section 156(g)(2)(B).

FDA recently approved for marketing the food additive Uvasorb HA88. Subsequent to this approval, the Patent and Trademark Office received a patent term restoration application for Uvasorb HA88 (U.S. Patent No. 4,477,615) from 3V Partecipazioni Industriali S.p.A., and the Patent and Trademark Office requested FDA's assistance in determining this patent's eligibility for patent term restoration. In a letter dated August 4, 2000, FDA advised the Patent and Trademark Office that this food additive had undergone a regulatory review period and that the approval of Uvasorb HA88 represented the first permitted commercial marketing or use of the product. Subsequently, the Patent and Trademark Office requested that FDA determine the product's regulatory review period.

FDA has determined that the applicable regulatory review period for Uvasorb HA88 is 3,482 days. Of this time, 684 days occurred during the testing phase of the regulatory review period, and 2,798 days occurred during the approval phase. These periods of time were derived from the following dates:

1. The date a major health or environmental effects test (test) involving this food additive additive product was begun: November 2, 1989. FDA has verified the applicant's claim that the test was begun on November 2, 1989.

2. The date the petition requesting the issuance of a regulation for use of the additive (petition) was initially Start Printed Page 27150submitted with respect to the food additive product under section 409 of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (21 U.S.C. 348): September 16, 1991. FDA has verified the applicant's claim that the petition was initially submitted on September 16, 1991.

3. The date the petition became effective: May 14, 1999. FDA has verified the applicant's claim that the regulation for the additive became effective/commercial marketing was permitted on May 14, 1999.

This determination of the regulatory review period establishes the maximum potential length of a patent extension. However, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office applies several statutory limitations in its calculations of the actual period for patent extension. In its application for patent extension, this applicant seeks 1,827 days of patent term extension.

Anyone with knowledge that any of the dates as published are incorrect may submit to the Dockets Management Branch (address above) written comments and ask for a redetermination by July 16, 2001. Furthermore, any interested person may petition FDA for a determination regarding whether the applicant for extension acted with due diligence during the regulatory review period by November 12, 2001. To meet its burden, the petition must contain sufficient facts to merit an FDA investigation. (See H. Rept. 857, part 1, 98th Cong., 2d sess., pp. 41-42, 1984.) Petitions should be in the format specified in 21 CFR 10.30.

Comments and petitions should be submitted to the Dockets Management Branch. Three copies of any information are to be submitted except that individuals may submit one copy. Comments are to be identified with the docket number found in brackets in the heading of this document. Comments and petitions may be seen in the Dockets Management Branch between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday through Friday.

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Dated: March 2, 2001.

Jane A Axelrad,

Associate Director for Policy, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research.

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[FR Doc. 01-12228 Filed 5-15-01; 8:45 am]