I totally support intellectual property rights. The law states that an inventor has 20 years of exclusivity to profit from their discovery. With no competition, they can charge whatever the market is willing to pay. But when that time is up, other companies can go ahead and begin to sell their discovery…which in pharmaceuticals, we call generics. Frontline contains the active ingredients fipronil and S-methoprene. Merial is the company who sells Frontline and owns the intellectual property rights. Fipronil was covered by Merial’s patent until August 3, 2010, after then, its exclusivity period was up. The same thing happened recently for Lipitor (human cholesterol drug). Pfizer, the discoverer and manufacturer, held the patent until it expired very recently also. Obviously, it results in a big BIG loss of revenue for these companies. So logically, companies fight hard for the strategy to sell their best selling product for a longer amount of time, without competition. Who can blame them. BUT don't be fooled when the competition arrives!
One of Merial’s strategies is to extend their exclusivity by filing new patents on new formulations of fipronil with other additives that have little or no effect on how well it works. Now, this is perfectly legal. They, again, invented a new formulation and a new method for applying the stuff, but because this probably does not affect how will it works, the rest is old-fashioned marketing! Frontline has tremendous brand value and they intend to continue to sell their product at the same HIGH price. Despite the fact that fipronil is off patent and can be manufactured by anyone and sold for a lot cheaper, they have brand recognition. But we don’t care who discovered or manufactures our flea and tick medicine, we only care that it is manufactured correctly, safely and is affordable. It's similar to buying Advil vs generic ibuprofen. Advil has the fancy gel-caps...but news flash, generic ibuprofen is just as safe and will get rid of your headache just as well!
Merial has recently launched Certifect which contains almatraz in addition to fipronil and S-methoprene. I'm very skeptical. In fact, I definitely won't buy it. I don't think it will work that much better. They are simply trying to extend the brand and fool the consumer into thinking that Certifect is better than the generic competition, such as Fiproguard.
I'm not advocating one over the other, but I will buy Fiprogaurd and give it a try. It contains the same exact active ingredient as Frontline and is half the price. JoJo will appreciate the new toys I can afford!!