Thursday, May 12, 2016

Clinical Drug Trial Patents Invalid Under 35 U.S.C. § 101

The court granted defendant's motion to dismiss because the asserted claims of plaintiff’s clinical drug trial patents encompassed unpatentable subject matter and found that the claims were directed toward an abstract idea. "[T]he 'heart' of the invention relates to using an electronic device to obtain clinical trial data that would otherwise be collected by pen-and-paper diary, and analyzing the data to decide whether to prompt action. The individual steps comprising the method, i.e., gathering data, analyzing same, and acting pursuant to that data, are similar to others that have been found to be abstract. Plaintiff nevertheless asserts that the fact that its invention is limited to clinical trials prevents it from being considered abstract. Yet, Federal Circuit and Supreme Court precedents clearly hold that the one cannot circumvent the ban on patenting abstract ideas by attempting to limit them to a particular technological environment."

eResearchTechnology, Inc. v. CRF, Inc. d/b/a CRF Health, 2-15-cv-00918 (PAWD May 10, 2016, Order) (Fischer, J.)

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