June 21, 2011

Supreme Court Will Hear Prometheus Case on Patenting Diagnostic Methods

A surprise from the Supreme Court, which famously heard a patent case in 2006 (briefed and argued) regarding the patentability of diagnostic methods/scientific correlations and then decided against issuing a decision (the Metabolite case) - this case became known for the spirited/dejected dissent issued by Justice Breyer, Souter and Stevens. Moving on - the Court has accepted the Prometheus v. Mayo case (heard and reheard at the Federal Circuit, amidst much turbulence from the Bilski case involving the patent eligibility of business methods. The Court has granted cert in Prometheus, which means that a significant life science patent eligibility case returns to the Court, at a time when the controversy over the potential patenting of scientific correlations has grown, as witness the challenge to the method claims in AMP v. USPTO (Myriad gene patent) case, which awaits a decision from the Federal Circuit.

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