01.18.18

Press Coverage About the EPO Board Revoking Broad’s CRISPR Patent

Posted in Deception, Europe, Patents at 5:36 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

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Summary: Even though there’s some decent coverage about yesterday’s decision (e.g. from The Scientist), the patent microcosm googlebombs the news with stuff that serves to distract from or distort the outcome

YESTERDAY was an important day for the EPO… for reasons other than EPO scandals. It was all about a case which we covered in the morning and right after the decision (we had complained about that a long while back).

“IAM has apparently not found that worth covering. Says a lot about IAM…”We always argued that patent offices should reserve patents to things that are actually inventions, not computer code or genetics (code of life). Pretty much every programmer agrees about the former. A lot of civil rights groups agree with us on the latter. These views are not unusual or outlandish. Nor should they be…

“The EPO has denied the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard’s reliance on its US priority provisional application in revoking a CRISPR patent. The institute has already said it will appeal,” Michael Loney wrote some hours ago. It’s about the EPO saying goodbye to (probably) all CRISPR patents, for the decision can extend to others.

IAM, which blatantly fronts for patent maximalists, ended up posting — for a fee — CRISPR propaganda on the very same day EPO buried patents on it. IAM has apparently not found that decision worth covering. Says a lot about IAM…

Expect some IAM spin shortly, complete with some highly misleading headline (i.e. the usual).

“The EPO has denied the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard’s reliance on its US priority provisional application in revoking a CRISPR patent.”
      –Michael Loney
Alexander Esslinger, writing about the demise of CRISPR patents in Europe having watched this closely for a long time, wrote this and “EPO Revokes Broad’s CRISPR Patent” was the headline from The Scientist.

A Web site dedicated to patent propaganda about life science did not actually cover the news; its headline focused on the future appeal rather than the actual outcome (just like Board wanted); “Broad Institute to appeal CRISPR patent revocation,” the article says. Missing the real story much?! That’s a really bad summary and many people read just headlines. To quote the body:

The Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT has said it will appeal against a decision by the European Patent Office (EPO) to revoke one of its patents covering CRISPR/Cas9 technology.

In an oral hearing today, January 17, the EPO’s Opposition Division revoked European patent 2,771,468 in its entirety after finding that Broad could not claim two key priority dates.

Broad released a statement saying the decision was a “technicality” and that it will appeal to the EPO’s Technical Board of Appeal.

Team UPC, which has already attacked me for my coverage about this decision, apparently did this paid-for placement about the decision.

In a decision delivered today the European Patent Office revoked a patent relating to CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing technology which had been granted to the Broad Institute, MIT and Harvard University.

There is probably more coverage on the way, but it’s worth noting how patent maximalists attempt to distract from the news (or did not cover the news at all).

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