Crystalization of oseltamivir phosphate,the active ingredient in Tamiflu
Hoffman La Roche
Due to its severity bird flu, or avian flu, is causing great concern worldwide. The main drug
for its treatment is Tamiflu. Tamiflu is an antiviral drug and acts to minimise the effects
of bird flu by inhibiting the protein neuraminidase that lives on the flu virus cells.
Tamiflu was developed by Gilead Sciences, and it is currently marketed by Hoffman La Roche.
The Tamiflu molecule is protected by patent, regardless of the means of synthesis used, and Roche
hold all rights pertaining to the patent. However, in 2005, and in response to fears of a birdflu
pandemic, Roche stated that it would not stop other companies making Tamiflu
under license, which is expressly permitted by international law in any case.