Patent Settled over Bovine Somatotropin for Dairy Cows

University of California and Monsanto resolve differences on production of Posilac.

Published on: Feb 27, 2006

The Regents of the University of California and Monsanto reached an agreement that resolves issues between them regarding possible infringement and validity of patent rights relating to the production of bovine somatotropin.

Monsanto markets BST under the brand name Posilac for use as a growth promoter in dairy cows.

Under the agreement Monsanto is granted an exclusive commercial license under the university's patent estate, including access under a patent which expires in 2023, for the manufacture of bovine somatotropin. Monsanto's license is subject to certain rights maintained by the U.S. government because the university's work was performed with federal funding. The university also retains certain non-commercial rights to practice the invention for research and educational purposes.

Monsanto will pay the university a $100 million upfront royalty and an ongoing royalty of 15 cents per dose of Posilac sold to dairy producers with a minimum annual royalty of $5 million through the 2023 expiration of the university's patent estate.

The agreement also drops all changes the university filed against Monsanto. A trial was scheduled to begin Feb. 27, 2006.