As readers well know, over the years many patent offices around the world have opened the door to the patentability of so-called “second medical uses” to foster research on possible solutions to unmet medical needs based on the use of already known compounds. Although the most developed patent offices such as the European Patent Office (“EPO”) and the United States Patent Office (“USPO”) have a relatively long history of accepting these types of claims, their effective protection may be distorted by existing regulatory regimes. For example, in countries where electronic-prescribing (“e-prescribing”) software cause an active principle to be prescribed for all possible uses regardless of the f [...]
As the readers well know, the European Patent Convention (“EPC”) system allows the validity of European patents to be challenged through two different routes: (i) oppositions filed before the European Patent Office (“EPO”); and (ii) revocation actions filed before national Courts. This system, which has its advantages, has disadvantages as well. For example, it may result in a waste of the time, money and other resources invested into litigating before a national Court if, when the proceedings before the national Court are at an advanced stage, the train that is running in parallel before the EPO leads the patent to the revocation station.
In countries where Judges have discretion to decide [...]
On 17 July 2014, Advocate General Pedro Cruz Villalón issued his opinion in Case C-364/13 International Stem Cell Corporation v. Comptroller General of Patents, whereby he proposed that the Court of Justice of the European Union (“CJEU”) give the following response to a question referred by the High Court of Justice, Chancery Division (Patents Court), of England and Wales regarding the meaning of “human embryos” in article 6(2) (c) of Directive 98/44/EC: “Unfertilised human ova whose division and further development have been stimulated by parthenogenesis are not included in the term “human embryos” in article 6(2) (c) of Directive 98/44/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 6 [...]
One of the most salient aspects of the draft of the new Spanish Patent Act which Spain’s Parliament will be discussing in the coming months is the dramatic modification of the legal regime governing utility models. Although there were rumours that the Spanish government would perhaps eliminate them from the new draft (since within some circles they are considered a bit of an anachronism), in reading the draft finally approved by the Council of Ministers, it transpires that utility models are here to stay. The new provisions introduced in the draft affect mainly the relevant state of the art, the type of inventions which can be protected via a utility model and the conditions for enforcing th [...]
1 July appears to be a date prone to attract landmark historical events. On 1 July 1751, for example, the first issue of Denis Diderot & Jean Le Rond d’ Alembert’s Enciclopedia was published in Paris. On the same day, 47 years later Napoleon Bonaparte invaded Alexandria. It was also on 1 July when the III modern Olympic Games were launched in St. Louis in 1904. And it will be another 1 July, this time in 2014, when the Court of Justice of the European Union (“CJEU”) will meet in Luxembourg to hear the action brought on 22 March 2013 by the Kingdom of Spain (“Spain”) against the European Parliament and the Council of the European Union (Case C-146/13), a dark cloud on the horizon of the Europ [...]
Those who embraced a deceptive feeling of easiness when they saw Articles 6 – 8 vanish from the text of Regulation (EU) Nº 1257/2012 of the European Parliament and the Council of 17 December 2012 will feel uneasy upon revisiting the judgment of 18 July 2013 (Case C-414/11 “Daiichi”) from the Court of Justice of the European Union (“CJEU”). If you thought that the Monster was over and done with (rather ironically, the first patent in history was granted to a monster, i.e., Il Badalone), please read this judgment carefully and you will see the first gremlins popping up. The stubborn stance taken by the European Union (“EU”) Commission in that case, aimed at stealing the Member States’ com [...]