The number of inventive step attacks in opposition procedures at the European Patent Office may be constrained in the future due to a recent change in the EPO Guidelines. According to David Brophy, partner at FRKelly, the change will improve efficiency, although the restrictions may also open up a new avenue for criticising decisions on…

The FCJ confirmed that inventive step is to be acknowledged if the feature(s) distinguishing the claimed invention from the starting point for the assessment of inventive step are not directly and unambiguously derivable or at least rendered obvious by the prior art. This applies equally to functional features. Case number: X ZR 51/06 Case date: 29…

AstraZeneca had filed an application for interim relief based on two patents, DK/EP 1250138 T4 (“EP 138”) and DK/EP 2266573 T3 (“EP 573”) against Sandoz, which conceded that to the extent that the patents were valid, the Sandoz product “Fulvestrant Sandoz” infringed upon the two patents. Sandoz took the position, however, that the patents should…

A Markush claim is a type of claim commonly used in chemical and pharmaceutical fields. On December 20, 2017, in Beijing Winsunny Harmony Science & Technology Co., Ltd. v. Daiichi Sankyo Co., Ltd, (“Daiichi Sankyo Case”), the Supreme People’s Court (“SPC”) resolved a long standing-split among Chinese courts regarding the interpretation and amendment of Markush…

In a case concerning two divisional patents derived from the same parent application relating to  ‘transcatheter heart valves’ or THVs, which can be introduced via a blood vessel, rather than through open heart surgery, the Court held one patent invalid for lack of inventive step, though had it been valid it would have been infringed. …

The Court of Appeal dismissed Boehringer Ingelheim’s application for permission to appeal the first instance Patents Court decision that EP (UK) 1,379,220 lacked inventive step.  The Court of Appeal also considered and overturned the existing judicial guidance on granting permission to appeal in patent matters. A full summary of this case has been published on…

Suppose you are a (patent) attorney in a pharmaceutical company and want to advise your company how to best protect the results of a clinical trial designed to find out the best possible treatment regimen of a certain known and approved drug X. The researchers of your company have devised and been allowed to conduct…

In one of the saga of cases that involved Societé des Produits Nestlé and companies that are trying to market capsules compatible with Nescafé’s Dolce Gusto system, the defendant alleged, among other arguments, that some of the patents asserted were null due to a lack of inventive step. The case was handled by Commercial Court…

Around this time last year, in Edwards Lifesciences v Boston Scientific [2017], His Honour Judge Hacon (sitting as a High Court Judge) had the opportunity to analyse two interesting aspects of UK patent law: (i) the law of implied disclosures and anticipation; and (ii) the importance of so-called secondary evidence in the evaluation of inventive…