Tag Archives: USPTO

FDA Oversight of Diagnostic Medicine – A Trap for the Unwary

Diagnostic medicine is experiencing new challenges at the USPTO and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Under a new FDA proposal, laboratory developed test providers, previously exempt from FDA oversight, must now consider if their diagnostic test may be subject to FDA oversight, either as a moderate risk (Class II) or high-risk (Class III) … Continue reading this entry

Patent Subject Matter Eligibility – Impact on Litigation and Prosecution

Personalized medicine relies on diagnostic technologies to accurately evaluate a patient’s clinical or genetic signature to guide treatment decisions. Protecting innovation by patenting the diagnostic methods and tools that inform clinical intervention and treatment has been the traditional means to protect investment in these important technologies. Recent U.S. Supreme Court decisions have challenged inventors’ ability … Continue reading this entry

Nautilus Standard Sinks Dow Patents

Dow Chemical Company (“Dow”) lost a ruling that competitor NOVA Chemical Corporation and NOVA Chemicals Inc. (collectively “NOVA”) infringed claims of two Dow patents when the Federal Circuit applied the U.S. Supreme Court’s new definiteness standard set forth in Nautilus, Inc. v. Biosig Instruments, Inc., 134 S. Ct. 2120 (2014)(“Nautilus”). Dow Chemical Co. v. NOVA Chemicals … Continue reading this entry

Patenting Stem Cells in View of the USPTO’s New Interim Guidance

Late last year, the USPTO issued its modified and revised 2014 Interim Guidance on Patent Subject Matter Eligibility (Interim Guidance) to assist patent examiners and the public in determining if a claim presented for examination is patent-eligible in view of recent U.S. Supreme Court decisions, namely Alice Corp., Myriad, and Mayo. In addition to streamlining … Continue reading this entry

An Early Test for the USPTO’S Eligibility Analysis

Just last week, the USPTO released its revised subject matter eligibility guidance (2014 Interim Guidance on Patent Subject Matter Eligibility “Interim Guidance” reviewed in my prior post of December 16th, 2014). The Interim Guidance replaced the March 2014 Guidance that was much-criticized for its expansive application of U.S. Supreme Court jurisprudence relating to the judicial … Continue reading this entry

Fetal Diagnostics Patent Claims Fall in Inter Partes Review

Post grant inter partes review proceedings have lowered the hurdle to invalidate U.S. patents. The “broadest reasonable construction” of the claims and the lower burden to prove invalidity (by a preponderance of the evidence) of inter partes review proceedings have resulted in many successful challenges. Indeed, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) of the … Continue reading this entry

USPTO Releases Revised Subject Matter Eligibility Guidance

On December 15th, 2014, the USPTO released its much anticipated revised subject matter eligibility examination guidance to assist patent examiners to evaluate inventions that may be related to any one of the three judicial exceptions to subject matter eligibility under 35 U.S.C. § 101 – law of nature, natural phenomena, and/or an abstract idea. 2014 … Continue reading this entry

USPTO Releases Examiner Post-"Myriad" Training Slides – Points to Ponder

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) published its examiner training materials (Training Materials) for applying “2014 Procedures For Subject Matter Eligibility Analysis Of Claims Reciting Or Involving Laws of Nature/Natural Principles, Natural Phenomena, And/Or Natural Products” (Guidance), that advised U.S. patent examiners and the public of the factors for determining whether a patent claim satisfies the … Continue reading this entry

United States and PTO Invited to Stem Cell Party

Last week Consumer Watchdog (“CW”) and Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (“WARF”) squared off at the Federal Circuit over CW’s appeal of the  inter partes reexamination of WARF’s U.S. Patent No.  7,029,913 (the ‘913 Patent, entitled “Primate Embryonic Stem Cells”). Consumer Watchdog v. Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation, No. 13-1377 (Fed. Cir. 2013).  CW’s appeal challenges the patent-eligibility of in vitro cultured human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) … Continue reading this entry

Update on WARF Stem Cell Patent Challenge

As reported in my July 8, 2013 post, Consumer Watchdog (formerly known as The Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights) and the Public Patent Foundation (collectively “CW”) asked the Federal Circuit to determine if in vitro cultured human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) are patent-eligible. Consumer Watchdog v. Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation, No. 13-1377 (Fed. Cir. … Continue reading this entry

Isolated DNA Is Not Patent-Eligible

Today the U.S. Supreme Court in Ass’n for Molecular Pathology v. Myriad Genetics, Inc., __ U.S. __ (2013) (opinion here), held that genes and DNA fragments merely isolated from nature without alteration are not patent-eligible. Justice Thomas, who delivered the opinion of the Court, stated that claims to isolated DNA (in this case, isolated BRCA1 and BRCA2 … Continue reading this entry

Personalized Medicine After the ACLU “Gene Patenting” Decision

The biotechnology industry, including those investing in personalized medicine, have been waiting for the Federal Circuit’s decision that answers the questions whether isolated DNA and use of the isolated material are patent-eligible under 35 U.S.C. § 101. As reported in our August 16th post, the same three judges (Lourie, Bryson and Moore) held that isolated … Continue reading this entry

What's Patentable After Prometheus? USPTO Issues Interim Response

The USPTO has just issued guidelines for its patent examining corps to assist them in determining whether a process claim is patent-eligible in light of the U.S. Supreme Court’s Mayo Collaborative Services v. Prometheus Laboratories, Inc., 566 U.S. __ (2012) (“Prometheus”) decision. A copy of the guidance document (“Guidance Document”) is attached. [2012_interim_guidance] The examiners are … Continue reading this entry

Status Update on the Genetic Testing Study

The U.S. Patent Office recently announced that it will not be delivering its report on Genetic Testing as required under Section 27 of the America Invents Act (“AIA”)  by the June 16, 2012 deadline.… Continue reading this entry

Patent-Eligibility of Medical Methods Considered By U.S. Supreme Court

This post is co-authored by Antoinette F. Konski and Jacqueline D. Wright Bonilla The U.S. Supreme Court entertained oral argument today in Mayo Collaborative Services v. Prometheus Laboratories, Inc. The case is being closely monitored by the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry, and in particular those in the industry that patent diagnostic methods and companion diagnostics.  … Continue reading this entry

Highly Anticipated "ACLU/Myriad" Gene Patenting Case Decided by Federal Circuit

Subject Matter Patent-Eligibility of Isolated DNA and Diagnostic Methods Addressed Head-on On Friday, July 29, 2011, in one of the most controversial and publicized biotech patent cases in recent years, the Federal Circuit decided the “ACLU/Myriad” gene patenting case, formally known as Assn. Molec. Path. et al. v. USPTO et al. In a majority opinion … Continue reading this entry

Patent Eligibility of Diagnostic Method Claims - What Have Courts Considered So Far?

Even for patent attorneys who specialize in personalized medicine, confusion still exists as to the best way to pursue and enforce diagnostic method patent claims in light of patent eligibility considerations under 35 U.S.C. §101.  While the Supreme Court and Federal Circuit have provided some guidance regarding patent eligibility of certain method claims, details of … Continue reading this entry