GMAT Critical Reasoning
In countries in which new life-sustaining drugs cannot be patented, such drugs are sold at widely affordable prices; those same drugs, where patented, command premium prices because the patents shield patent-holding manufacturers from competitors. These facts show that future access to new life-sustaining drugs can be improved if the practice of granting patents on newly developed life-sustaining drugs were to be abolished everywhere.
Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the argument?
- A In countries in which life-sustaining drugs cannot be patented, their manufacture is nevertheless a profitable enterprise.
- B Countries that do not currently grant patents on life-sustaining drugs are, for the most part, countries with large populations.
- C In some countries specific processes for the manufacture of pharmaceutical drugs can be patented even in cases in which the drugs themselves cannot be patented.
- D Pharmaceutical companies can afford the research that goes into the development of new drugs only if patents allow them to earn high profits.
- E Countries that grant patents on life-sustaining drugs almost always ban their importation from countries that do not grant such patents.
Correct Answer: D