Patent Law. Ariad v. Eli Lilly

http://www.patentlyo.com/patent/2009/04/written-description-pioneering-clams-require-broader-written-description.html
Ariad v. Eli Lilly, this case even has its own wiki page!!! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ariad_v._Lilly

Relevance for agricultural development?  This was a patent that was definitely a pioneering effort in the field of small molecule effects on cellular function. The courts have ruled that the claims overreached what the inventors had, in-hand, when the patent application was filed. A common (often valid) concern is that when ‘break through’ innovations are the subject matter of a patent application, the patent office examiners are not really prepared to deal with the new subject matter in a way that is as thorough as examineations of applications filed when a technology becomes ‘mature’. This ruling should give some comfort to those that feel that early patent rights on any new technology are so broad, as to prevent any utilization of the innovation in the future.

The original patent was filed by three BIG powerhouses of innovation in the U.S., M.I.T., Harvard and the Whitehead Institute. Two of the inventors are Nobel Laureates!

Post written by Victoria Henson-Apollonio

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