Overview

Peter L’Ecluse focuses on life sciences, competition law and intellectual property (IP) rights.

Life Sciences

Peter’s expertise encompasses a wide range of areas, including registration, pricing and reimbursement matters, advertising issues and all aspects of competition law. He has successfully represented clients before civil courts, as well as Belgium’s administrative court, the Council of State, in challenging reimbursement decisions and rules imposing prescription requirements on physicians.    

Competition Law

Peter has been involved in most of the significant cases arising before the Belgian competition authorities and the courts. His expertise in this area extends to merger control, cartels, dominant market positions and procedural issues. Peter has broad experience in the telecommunications, life sciences, energy and fast moving consumer goods sectors.

Peter has handled such significant cases as Eco Swiss – Benetton (on arbitration and competition law) and ITT Promedia (involving the interplay between anticompetitive regulation and abusive conduct) before the European Commission and the European Courts. 

IP Rights

Peter’s patent litigation practice focuses on the life sciences industry. For several years, he has acted as co-counsel for one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world, handling multi-jurisdictional patent litigation while defending valuable patents covering various active substances against generic competitors. Peter also acted as co-counsel in proceedings before the European Patent Office and the Belgian courts for a major medical devices company in patent litigation which covered three jurisdictions. He often advises on supplementary protection certificate patent extension issues and assists clients in dealing with counterfeit trade in pharmaceuticals.

Languages

Dutch, English, French

Recommendations

  • Chambers Europe – Competition: Domestic
  • Chambers Europe for Intellectual Property
  • Chambers Europe – ‘Leaders In Their Field’ (Competition: Domestic)
  • Chambers Europe – ‘Leaders In Their Field’ (Intellectual Property) 
  • IAM Patent 1000 – The World’s Leading Patent Practitioners
  • Managing Intellectual Property – IP Star
  • LMG Life Sciences (Europe) – Life Sciences Star 
  • PLC for Belgium Life Sciences – Regulatory
  • PLC for Belgium Life Sciences – Intellectual Property
  • PLC for Europe Life Sciences – Competition/Anti-trust
  • PLC for Belgian Competition Law/Anti-trust
  • PLC for Belgium Dispute Resolution
  • International Who’s Who Legal for Life Sciences
  • Legal 500 for Intellectual Property
  • Legal 500 for Dispute Resolution 
  • Legal 500 for EU Regulatory – Pharma and Biotech
  • European Legal Experts for Intellectual Property
  • World IP Review – WIPR Leader

Education

  • The George Washington University, Washington DC, Master of Comparative Law, 1987
  • University of Leuven, Master of Laws, 1986
  • University of Leuven, Baccalaureus of Philosophy, 1985

Publications

Widely published on issues involving life sciences and competition law.

Contributor to Van Bael & Bellis' Business Law Guide to Belgium (Kluwer Law International/Bruylant, 2003).

Contributor to “Private Antitrust Litigation” (European Lawyer Reference/Thomson Reuters, 2013).

Contributor to Van Bael & Bellis, Competition Law of the European Community (fifth edition, Kluwer, 2010), the standard work of reference in the field of EU competition law.

Events

Frequent speaker on life science issues

Professional Activities

Former member of the bar council of the Dutch-language bar of Brussels

Bar Admission

Brussels
Former member of the Bar Council of Dutch language lawyers (Brussels)

Publications and insights

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    • 11/09/2019
    • Articles

    Stella Kyriakides Commissioner-Designate for Health

    Stella Kyriakides, a member of the Cypriot parliament, a trained psychologist and a forceful advocate of patient rights (she is a past President of Europa Donna, the breast cancer patient group), has been entrusted with the health portfolio by Ursula von der Leyen, the President-elect of the incoming European Commission. Like the other designated Commissioners, Ms. Kyriakides’ appointment still has to be approved by the European Parliament, but with her colleagues she is expected to take up her position in November 2019.

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    • 09/09/2019
    • Articles

    Belgium - Minister of Economic Affairs Uses Price Regulation Powers against Leadiant's CDCA

    Minister of Economic Affairs Wouter Beke took action against pharmaceutical firm Leadiant and, making use of his price regulation powers, reduced the price of chenodeoxycholic acid Leadiant (“CDCA”), a medicine indicated for the treatment of patients afflicted with cerebrotendinous xanthomatosis, a rare metabolic disorder (“CTX”). CDCA was designated as an orphan medicine in December 2014, but its active substance is no longer patented and has been used for many years as an inexpensive treatment for cholesterol gallstones. In a press release (see attached, only the Dutch version is available), the Minister says that he lowered the price of what would seem to be a presentation of 100 tablets of 250mg of CDCA Leadiant to EUR 3,653.25 ex factory, while Leadiant had sought a price of EUR 14,000 ex factory. The presentation at issue covers the treatment of CTX during approximately one month. The Minister has also urged the Belgian Competition Authority (“BCA”) to review as a matter of priority the alleged abuse of a dominant position of which Leadiant might be guilty. The case before the BCA results from a complaint filed by consumer organisation Test-Aankoop/Test-Achats earlier this year (see, Van Bael & Bellis Life Sciences Newsflashes of 9 April 2019 and 11 February 2019). Additionally, the Minister called on the European Commission to review the rules governing orphan medicines. However, that call is superfluous as an assessment of these rules has already been under way for quite some time (see, Van Bael & Bellis Life Sciences Newsflash of 18 October 2018) and the outcome of this exercise is expected to be high on the agenda of the incoming European Commission.

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    • 05/09/2019
    • News

    Medicines Cooperation - Sweden to Join International Horizon Scanning Initiative

    On 4 September 2019, the Dutch Minister for Medical Care, Bruno Bruins, announced plans for Sweden to join the impending International Horizon Scanning Initiative (“IHSI”) (see, attached press release). IHSI, which is expected to start in October 2019, is a form of international cooperation that seeks to identify innovative medicines before they reach the market. It will inform decision-making on treatment and budgets in the participating countries. IHSI is just one example of a broader trend of expanding international cooperation on medicines in a range of areas and in varying geographical constellations. Last month, Minister Bruins had already announced that Canada would also become a member of IHSI (see, Van Bael & Bellis Life Sciences Newsflash of 18 July 2019). When airing the intentions of Sweden, Minister Bruins expressed the hope that IHSI would be able to begin operations with 10 member countries. Other known aspiring members include Belgium, Ireland, Luxemburg and The Netherlands.

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