in 2000 and two, a group off treatment activist met to discuss the early development of the airplane.
The Wright brothers in the beginning of the last century had for the first time managed to make one of those devices fly.
They also had taken out numerous patents on essential parts of the airplane.
They were not the only ones that was common practice in the industry, and those who helped patents on airplanes were defending them fiercely and suing competitors left and right.
This actually wasn't so great for the development of the aviation industry, and this was at the time that in particular the U.
S government was interested in ramping up the production off military airplanes.
So there was a bit of a conflict there.
S government decided to take action and forced those patent holders to make their patents available to share with others to enable the production off off airplanes.
So what is this got to do with this?
In 2000 and two, Nelson Obama, a Kenyan social scientists, discovered he had HIV and needed access to treatment.
He was told that a cure did not exist.
Eight you heard was little and treatment was not offered.
This was at the time that treatment actually existed in rich countries.
Aides had become a chronic disease.
People in our countries here in Europe in North America were living with HIV healthy lives.
Not so for Nelson.
He wasn't rich enough, and not so for his three year old son.
He discovered a year later, also had HIV.
Nelson decided to become a treatment activist and join up with other groups.
In 2000 and two day, we're facing a different battle prices for Air V's.
The drugs needed to treat HIV costs about 12,000 per patient per year.
The patterns on those drugs were held by a number off Western pharmaceutical companies, UM, that were not necessarily willing to make those patents available.
When you have a patent, you can exclude anyone else from making from producing or making low cost versions, for example, available off those off those medications.
Clearly, this led to patent wars breaking out all over the globe.
Luckily, those patterns did not exist everywhere.
There were countries that did not recognize pharmaceutical product patterns such as India, and Indian pharmaceutical companies started to produce so called generic versions, low cost copies off anti retroviral medicines and make them develop available in the developing world.
And within a year, the price had come down from 10,000 dollars per patient per year to $350 per patient per year.
And today that same triple pill cocktail is available for $60 per patient per year.
And, of course, that started to have an enormous effect on the number of people who could afford access to those medicines.
Treatment programs became possible, funding became available, and the number of people on antiretroviral drugs started to increase very rapidly.
Today, eight million people have access to antiretroviral drugs.
34 million are infected with HIV.
Never has this number been so high.
But actually this is good news, because what it means is people start dying.
People who have access to these drugs stopped dying, and there's something else.
They also stop passing on the virus.
This is fairly recent science that has shown that what that means is we have the tools to break the back off this epidemic.
So what's the problem?
Well, things have changed first, awful.
The rules have changed.
Today all countries are obliged to provide patents for pharmaceuticals that lasts at least 20 years.
This is as a result of the intellectual property rules of the World Trade Organization.
So what India did is no longer possible.
Second, the practice off patent holding companies have changed.
Here you see the patent practices before the World Trade Organization's rules before 95 four antiretroviral drugs.
This is what you see today, and this is in developing countries.
So what that means is, unless we do something deliberate, and unless we do something now, we will very soon be faced with another drug price crisis.
Because new drugs are developed, new drugs go to market.
But these medicines are patented in a much wider range of countries.
So unless we act, unless we do something today, we will soon be faced what some have termed the treatment time bomb.
It isn't only the number off drugs that are patented.
There's something else that can really scare generic manufacturers away.
This shows you a patent landscape.
This is the landscape off one medicine, so you can imagine that if you are a generic company about to decide whether to invest in the development off this product.
Unless you know that the licenses to these patents are actually going to be available, you will probably choose to do something else again.
Deliberate action is needed.
So surely, if a patent pool could be established to ramp up the production off military airplanes, we should be able to do something similar to tackle the HIV AIDS epidemic.
And we did in 2000 and 10.
Unit eight established the medicines patent pool for HIV, and this is how it works.
Patent holders inventors to develop new medicines, patent those inventions.
But make those patents available to the medicines patent pool the medicines patent pool, then license those out to ever need access to those patterns that can be generic manufacturers.
It can also be not for profit drug development agencies, for example.
Those manufacturers can then sell those medicines had much lower costs to people who need access to them to treatment programs that need access to them.
They pay royalties over the sales to the patent holder, so they are remunerated for sharing their intellectual property.
There is one key difference with the airplane patent pool, the medicines patent pool.
It's a voluntary mechanism the airplane patent holders were not left a choice.
When it a license, their patents or not, they were forced to do so.
That is something that the medicines patent pool cannot do.
It relies on the willingness of pharmaceutical companies to license their patents and make them available for others for others to use today.
Now, so no drama is healthy.
He has access to antiretroviral drugs.
His son will soon be 14 years old.
Nelson is a member of the expert advisory group Off the Medicines Patent Pool.
And he told me, not so long ago, Ellen.
We rely in Kenya and in many other countries on the medicines patent pool to make sure that new medicines also become available to us, that new medicines without delay become available to us.
And this is no longer fantasy already.
Um, I'll give you an example.
In August of this year, the United States drug agency approved a new four in one AIDS medication.
The company, Gilead, that holds the patents as license licensed the intellectual property to the medicines patent pool.
The pool is already working today, two months later with generic manufacturers to make sure that this product can go to market at low cost, where and when it is needed.
This is unprecedented.
This has never been done before.
The rule is about a 10 year delay for a new product to go to market in developing countries, if at all.
This has never been seen before.
Nelson's expectations are very high and quite rightly so.
He had a son will need access to the next generation anti retrovirals and the next throughout their lifetime, so that he and many others in Kenya and other countries can continue to live healthy, active lives.
Now we count on the willingness of drug companies to make that happen.
We count on those companies that understand that it is in the interest not only in interest off the global good, but also in their own interest to move from conflict to collaboration and through the medicines patent pool, they can make that happen.
They can also choose not to do that.
But Dake does that go down that road may end up in a similar situation.
The Wright brothers ended up with early last century facing forcible measures by government.