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April 26 marks World Intellectual Property (IP) Day. The day celebrates the role that IP rights play in spurring innovation and technological progress. The theme of year’s event is: Innovation – Improving Lives. The World Intellectual Property Organisation director-general, Francis Gurry, states, "IP is a crucial part of a successful innovation system. It provides a return for those who take the risk to introduce the ‘new’ — in terms of products and services — into the economy. It provides a framework for the rather difficult and challenging journey that any idea has to undertake before becoming a commercially available product or service." Innovation in medical technology, over the past five decades, has given scientists access to powerful tools to develop new procedures and drugs that have resulted in unprecedented advancements in human longevity. World-wide, life expectancy at birth has increased dramatically from an average of 53 years in 1960 to an average of 72 years in 2015. ...

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