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Welcome to the IPBio Newsletter - a quarterly roundup of intellectual property and bioscience news

Vol. 0

Global Youth Academy (22 November 2012), The Global Young Academy (GYA) embraces Open Science movement as being in the best interest of science.

Alex Philippidis, Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology News (18 June 2012) "With USPTO Report Near, Comments Reflect Confirmatory Diagnostic Testing Divide".

Kevin E. Noonan, Patent Docs (17 June 2012) "Parties and Amici File Briefs in Myriad Case".

ACLU Newsletter (15 June 2012) "Case Challenging Patents on Breast and Ovarian Cancer Genes Returns to Appeals Court".

Alex Philippidis, Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology News (15 June 2012) "With Briefs Due June 15, Myriad Fires First Shot in Circuit Rematch Over Gene Patenting".

R. Sivaraman, The Hindu (22 May 2012) "Intellectual Property Appellate Board rules ‘Ayur’ can’t be trademark".

Tim Dean, Australian Life Scientist (16 May 2012),"Gene patents challenged again".

Catherine Saez, Intellectual Property Watch (12 May 2012), "Agreement On Future Work For Development Committee Snatched From Defeat At WIPO."

European Parliament, (10 May 2012), "Resolution on the patenting of essential biological processes".

Editorial, Nature (10 May 2012), "Misplaced protest: Rothamsted's genetically engineered wheat should be allowed to grow." 485: 147-148.

AP, The Washington Post (9 May 2012), "Despite ban, NY man admits trading biotechnology stocks illegally for 2nd time in 20 years".

George Gaskell, Sally Stares & Alain Pottage, Nature Biotechnology (07 May 2012), "How Europe's ethical divide looms over biotech law and patents." 30: 392–394.

Antony Aisi, ASNS (05 May 2012), "Foundation grants Open Forum for Agricultural Biotechnology in Africa USD3m grant".

Guy Kiddle et al., BMC Biotechnology (30 April 2012), "GMO detection using a bioluminescent real time reporter (BART) of loop mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) suitable for field use". 12:15

Dennis Crouch, Patently-O (30 April 2012), "Gene Patent Debate Returns to the Federal Circuit".

Dr. Joseph Mercola, Huffington Post (30 April 2012), "Something Historic Is About to Happen".

Carolyn Lochhead, San Francisco Chronicle (30 April 2012), "Genetically modified crops' results raise concern".

Science Codex, (22 April 2012), "Climate change may create price volatility in the corn market, say Stanford and Purdue researchers".

David Hunter, Journal of Medical Ethics blog (18 April 2012), "Bioethics - a discipline without a natural home?".

Ayesha Jadoon, BioNews (27 February 2012), "Miniature DNA sequencer could read a genome in seconds".

Dr Stuart Hogarth and Professor Paul Martin, BioNews (6 February 2012) "The myth of the genomic revolution".

Christine Kearney, Medical News Today (10 January 2012), "Entire Human Genome Sequenced For $1,000".

Aurora Plomer, The Guardian (12 December 2011), "EU ban on stem cell patents is a threat both to science and the rule of law".

Michael Morrison, Egenis Comment (27 November 2011), "The patenting of human embryonic stem cells".

Ewen Callaway, Nature (24 October, 2011), European ban on stem-cell patents has a silver lining: 478, 441.

Catherine Saez, Intellectual Property Watch (20 October 2011), UPOV Marks 50 Years; Breeders Seek More Enforcement, Civil Society Wants In.

Ingrid Schneider comments on the European Court of Justice's ruling on embryonic stem cells (C-34/10). Hamburg, 18.10.2011.

Cristina Luiggi, The Scientist (18 October, 2011), Battle Over Gene Patenting Rages On: The case challenging the right of a healthcare company to patent cancer genes may make it all the way to the US Supreme Court.

Andy Coghlan, New Scientist (2 August 2011), Breast Cancer Gene Patent Reinstated.

Stephen Adams, The Telegraph (5 Aug 2011), NHS Hospitals Face DNA Patent Law Suits.

Steve Connor, The Independent (Thursday, 28 April 2011), "Ruling on stem-cell patents may spell end of research in Europe."

Michael Kirkland, UPI (10 April, 2011), "Under the U.S. Supreme Court: Can you patent the building blocks of life?"

TMC News (12 February, 2011), Where the Research Goes: WSU Aids Employees with Inventions, Intellectual Property.

The Economic Times (11 February, 2011), Panacea Biotec to Launch Breast Cancer Drug.

Jonathan Lynn (Wed, 9 February, 2011), Northeast Asia Dominates Patent Filing Growth Reuters.

The Medical News (1 February, 2011), USPTO Board of Patent Appeals Rules in Favor of Pacific Biosciences in Case Against Life Technologies.

Intellectual Property Today (Tuesday, 1 February, 2011), Pacific Biosciences Announces Favorable Ruling in Patent Interference Case With Life Technologies.

Arundhati Parmar (Tue, 25 January, 2011), Hoping to Cash in on Intellectual Property, Finance and Commerce.

Cameron Parkins (11 November, 2010), Creative Commons Talks With: Robert Cook-Deegan of the Centre for Genomics at Duke, Creative Commons.

Brandon Keim (1 April, 2010), End of Gene Patents Will Help Patients, Force Companies to Change, Wired Science.

No European patent for WARF/Thomson stem cell application (Munich, 27 November 2008)

European patent law prohibits the patenting of human stem cell cultures whose preparation necessarily involves the destruction of human embryos. That is the decision reached by the Enlarged Board of Appeal of the European Patent Office (EPO) in appeal proceedings on the WARF/Thomson stem cell application, which describes a method for obtaining embryonic stem cell cultures from primates, including humans. The Enlarged Board is responsible for ensuring uniform application of patent law under the European Patent Convention (EPC), the legal basis for the EPO, and its decisions are binding in relation to patent practice at the EPO.

The Enlarged Board bases its decision (G 2/06) on the relevant provisions of the EPC and on the EU Biotechnology Directive (98/44/EC), which was implemented in the EPC in 1999. Before then the EPC already incorporated a ban on the patenting of inventions whose commercial exploitation would be contrary to public order ("ordre public") or morality (Article 53(a) EPC). In implementing the Directive, Rule 28 EPC gives specific shape to the general prohibition under Article 53(a) EPC by among other things prohibiting patents on uses of human embryos for industrial or commercial purposes. The significant point in the case of the Thomson application is that the claimed human stem cell cultures cannot be produced without the use (and destruction) of human embryos, and the provisions governing exceptions to patentability are therefore deemed to apply. The Enlarged Board does however stress that its decision is not concerned with the general question of human stem cell patentability.

The request of the appellant, the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF), for a preliminary ruling on the issue by the European Court of Justice was rejected by the Enlarged Board as inadmissible for lack of any legal and institutional link between the EPO appeal boards and the EU.

The Enlarged Board took its decision in response to a referral by the EPO technical board of appeal responsible for the case, which in 2006 had requested it to examine certain points of law with a view to clarifying the patentability of the WARF/Thomson application under the EPC.

For more information please contact: Rainer Osterwalder Media Relations Directorate Phone: +4989/2399-1820 Mobile: +49163 8399527

The Daily Mash (20 February 2008), Is It Time To Use Stem Cells For Practical Jokes?

Past Conferences, Workshops and Seminars

Patenting Life: genes and generations, round table session at ISHPSSB, July 11th 2013, Montpellier

2012 Global Congress on Intellectual Property and the Public Interest, Setting the Positive Agenda in Motion. (Afro-IP) 15-19 December 2012.

WHEATS at Penn, Workshop for the History of the Environment, Agriculture, Technology, and Science, U. Penn, 15-17 March, 2013.

"The Lives of Property". 21 September 2012, Institute for Science, Innovation and Society, University of Oxford.

ASU-ISB 2012 ISHPSSB Off-Year Workshop: What's New about Systems Biology?, Arizona State University and the Institute for Systems Biology, Washington, 16-17 August 2012.

Making Data Accessible to All, an Egenis and GARNet Workshop, University of Exeter, 12-13 July 2012.

Towards personalized medicine? Biomarkers in Practice, University of Vienna, 28-29 June 2012

Intellectual Property as Cultural Technology, Fourth Annual Workshop of the International Society for the History and Theory of Intellectual Property (ISHTIP). London School of Economics, 25-26 June 2012.

'Credit in Science: An Interdisciplinary Workshop': Graham Dutfield (U. Leeds), "Did Kary Mullis really invent PCR?". Tuesday 29th May, 3.00-5.00pm with a wine reception to follow, Egenis Seminar Room, Byrne House, University of Exeter.

"The Aesthetics of Politics of Specimins on Display". 17-18 May, UCL. Abstracts.

Property and Ownership in the Contemporary Life Sciences, Bioproperty Seminar Series (InSIS, Oxford University).

"Governance and Intellectual Property of Biotechnology: Developed and Developing Countries Perspectives" , Postgraduate Forum on Genetics and Society (PFGS), 2nd March 2012, University of Sheffield.

ISHTIP Workshop 2011 (5-6 July, 2011), South Bank, Brisbane, Australia.

International Society for the History, Philosophy and Social Studies of Biology 2011 Meeting (10-15 July, 2011), Salt Lake City, Utah, USA.

Myles Jackson (13 June 2011), Intellectual Property and Molecular Biology: Biomedicine, Commerce, and the CCR5 Gene Patent, White Rose IPBio Public Lecture, University of York. Poster.

Plants, Animals and Ownership Innovation and Intellectual Property Protection in Living Organisms Since the 18th Century (3-5 June, 2011), Yale University, New Haven, CT, USA. CFP.

BAYH-DOLE @ 30: MAPPING THE FUTURE OF UNIVERSITY PATENTING (April 29-30, 2011), Center for Science and Innovation Studies, UC Davis, USA.

Second Annual ISHTIP Workshop, Geographies of Intellectual Property (24-26 September, 2010), American University, Washington, D.C.

Intellectual Property and the Biosciences (7-8 July, 2010), White Rose IPBio Symposium and Summer School, University of Leeds, UK.

Managing Knowledge in the Techno-Sciences, 1850-2000 (5-8 July, 2010), University of Leeds, UK.

International Society for the History and Theory of Intellectual Property Workshop (26-27 June, 2009), Bocconi University, Italy.

ISHTIP - the International Society for the History and Theory of Intellectual Property - is pleased to announce that its first Workshop will take place at Bocconi University in Milan, Italy on 26-27 June, 2009. The Workshop will explore 'the Construction of Immateriality', understood broadly as the myriad legal and non-legal processes by which individuals and groups are credited with, and rewarded for, the authorship of intangible creations, while others are condemned or penalised for using or claiming such creations as their own. To learn more about ISHTIP, see: The call for papers can be downloaded here.

Owning and Disowning Invention Workshop (24 March, 2009), University of Leeds, UK.

Governance of New Technologies: the Transformation of Medicine, Information Technology and Intellectual Property (29-31 March, 2009), An International Interdisciplinary Conference, University of Edinburgh.

The conference will focus on evolving and emerging technologies and new-technology-driven practices and their impact on the overlapping fields of (1) healthcare, (2) information technology, and (3) intellectual property, each of which are increasingly important in the post-genomic and post-AI world, with its heavy reliance on new technologies and their distribution. For more information please see here.

Owning and Disowning Invention: Intellectual Property Authority and Identity in British Science and Technology, 1880-1920 (October, 2008), Panel at SHOT, Lisbon.

Representatives from the Owning and Disowning Group based at Leeds presented a panel on issues around IP and invention at SHOT's annual conference, hosted in Lisbon in 2008. A synopsis of the panel can be downloaded here.

Living Properties: Making Knowledge and Controlling Ownership in the History of Biology (29-31 May, 2008), Max Planck Institute for History of Science, Berlin.

Papers were given by a range of scholars form both historical and legal backgrounds. The workshop focused on how knowledge of and innovations in living organisms and related technologies have been realized and how the products achieved identification and protection as intellectual property in the market place. Four forms of knowledge and innovation were given due consideration: a) natural history and classification with its attendant collections, mutual gifts, certificates and trademarks; b) the breeding of plants and animals; c) experimental biology (i.e. genetic, bacteriology and biochemistry) with its growing ability to manipulate and patent "pure" organisms, molecules or metabolic pathways; and d) modern biotechnology with its emphasis on sequences, broadened intellectual property rights, and upstream control of life "itself". The workshop was lively and informative, and it handsomely fulfilled our hopes and expectations. It brought to light specific knowledge on a variety of appropriation mechanisms and it advanced fascinating comparisons and provocative ideas. For a copy of the workshop's programme please see here.