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Posts Tagged: "medical"

TTAB Says No Likely Confusion Between Rap Producer Dr. Dre and OB/GYN Specialist Dr. Drai

On May 3rd, the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) issued a decision in a trademark opposition proceeding which was petitioned by Andre Young, the rapper and record producer better known as Dr. Dre. The rap mogul filed the trademark opposition to challenge the registration of federal trademarks filed by Draion Burch, an obstetrics and gynecology (OB/GYN) medical specialist who had filed applications to protect trademarks related to his nickname, Dr. Drai. The TTAB’s found that, although Dr. Dre’s name has sufficient fame for trademark protection, the opposer did not prove a likelihood of consumer confusion or false suggestion of a connection.

Earle Dickson Invents Band-Aid® Bandages to Promote Healing

December 28 marks the anniversary of the issuance of a patent covering a bandage technology commonly known as the Band-Aid®, invented at Johnson & Johnson… In order to speed up the process of tending to his wife’s cuts and nicks, Dickson came to the idea of preparing a length of adhesive tape with sections of gauze, allowing Josephine to snip off a strip of tape and quickly apply the adhesive bandage. When the couple considered how useful such a product might be in households across the country, Earle brought the idea to his boss James Wood Johnson, another one of the three co-founding brothers of J&J. Band-Aid® brand adhesive bandages first hit the consumer market in 1920.

Superbugs Require New Weapons: Strong, Effective Intellectual Property Rights May Be Our Best, Last Hope

The dangers of killer germs and superbugs are not limited to bird flu in China, Ebola in West Africa, Zika in South America and MERS in the Middle East… If we are to have a fighting chance against superbugs and pandemics, we must invest in innovation and safeguard the property rights that incentivize these discoveries. Short-sighted efforts to enervate existing intellectual property rights laws and policies will not only damage incentives to innovate, they may hand a victory to the superbugs.

Patenting Costs in ASEAN: Upcoming Global Economic Powerhouse

Founded in 1967 by Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is a regional organization that aims to “accelerate economic growth, social progress, and sociocultural evolution among its members.” The organization’s membership has subsequently expanded to ten, with the induction of Brunei, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, and Vietnam. Collectively, the ten economies constitute an economic powerhouse; the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) was the third largest Asian economy and the seventh largest global economy in 2014, as per the ASEAN website. Further, the AEC is expected to grow at a feverish pace of 7% per annum and is touted to be the fourth largest economy in the world by 2030 (Ken Moriyasu; 2016).

District Court Broadens Scope of Patent Ineligibility Under § 101 for a Treatment Method

The ‘156 patent discloses methods of treating and/or preventing metabolic diseases, particularly diabetes, in patients for whom metformin therapy is inappropriate due to intolerability or contraindication against metformin, e.g., renal disease, metabolic acidosis, congestive heart failure. Defendants alleged that the asserted claims are patent ineligible because the claims recite a natural law. Plaintiffs argued claims of the ’156 patent are directed towards methods of treating the targeted patient population with metabolic diseases using non-naturally existing DPP-IV inhibitors, which alter the natural state of the body in a new and useful way, and hence do not fall within the natural phenomena exception… Superficially, this decision may appear to be consistent with Mayo – methods of treatment claims that manipulate natural biological processes are considered to be directed to patent ineligible subject matter under § 101. However… it is not perfectly clear that the treatment claims of the patent-at-issue are directed to a law of nature or an abstract idea. Claim 1 is directed to an active practical application of a compound for treatment… The decision also appears at odds with the USPTO Subject Matter Eligibility Examples.

Medical software provides life-saving results, not abstract ideas

Those who make the argument that medical software is abstract, or trivial, are just wrong. Medical software has been developed to benefit both patients and medical practitioners by providing better diagnostics, which ultimately lead to new and better treatments… In the context of medical technology, the proper evaluation and effective treatment of patients depend upon complex correlations assessed over prescribed times. This, in turn, relies upon the generation of predictive models from a comparison of an individual patient’s signs and symptoms against a database of studied human wellness parameters, which contain patterns of diagnosis, chosen treatment, and outcome. These efforts are far from trivial.

Swiss researchers make breakthrough in medical microrobot technology

ETHZ, one of the Swiss universities involved in the recent microbot breakthrough, received a patent in 2013 for a related technology. U.S. Patent No. 8405256, entitled Wireless Resonant Magnetic Actuation for Untethered Microrobots, claims a wireless resonant micro-actuator having at least two magnetic bodies connected to each other with a resilient member to form a spring-mass system, a magnetic field generator which creates a magnetic force to wirelessly power the spring-mass system and a converter which converts oscillatory motion of the two magnetic bodies into useful motion for the untethered microrobot. This innovation addresses issues in propulsion systems for microrobots which are incapable of creating effective propulsion for an untethered microrobot.

Strength of IBM’s Watson Health seen in Bausch & Lomb iOS app for cataract surgeries

IBM has been wading further into the medical fields over the past few years thanks to the strength of its cognitive computing division, especially the rise of Watson Health. Last year, we covered the news that Watson Health had picked up its first major corporate partner in Israeli generic medication developer Teva Pharmaceuticals (NYSE:TEVA). Near the end of May, IBM made a significant hire for its Watson Health division by bringing aboard Dr. Paul Tang, formerly the chief innovation officer (CIO) and chief technology officer (CTO) for the Palo Alto Medical Foundation. Watson Health already has grown its list of partnering consumer health developers including Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) and Medtronic, Inc. (NYSE:MDT)

Innovation Lessons From a Billionaire

I did not start out to be an inventor,” writes the billionaire inventor and spinal surgeon Gary K. Michelson in the preface to a newly-published book entitled The Intangible Advantage: Understanding Intellectual Property in the New Economy. “I wanted to be a doctor,” he explained. “That’s all I ever wanted to be, ever since the day I sat at my grandmother’s kitchen table — I must have been seven years old — and smelled her flesh burning on the stove. You see, my grandmother suffered from syringomyelia, a crippling spinal disease that results in terrible back pain and the loss of sensation to pain and temperature in the extremities, especially the hands. When I saw the flames licking up through her fingers that day, I screamed, and she quickly doused her hand in the sink.

Travelers Early Severity Predictor helps to identify chronic pain, reducing opioid addiction risk

We reached out to Travelers and were able to confirm through a spokesperson that two patent applications published this year by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office cover technologies associated with the Early Severity Predictor project. One is U.S. Patent Application No. 20160034662, titled Systems, Methods, and Apparatus for Identifying and Mitigating Potential Chronic Pain in Patients. This would protect an apparatus with a processor determining information about a claim associated with a person including medical condition, employment information and personal information. This information is analyzed to determine an indication that a person will develop chronic pain and the processor further determines a preventative action which can arrest chronic pain development. The technology also covers a dashboard which can be displayed to insurance users, including providers and policyholders alike, which can quickly alert people to high chronic pain risks and pain drivers.

A look at treatments for hepatitis C, America’s top infectious disease killer

The FDA has been pretty active this year in approving new tests and treatments designed to help identify and eliminate the hepatitis C virus in patients. Swiss healthcare developer Roche (VTX:ROG) received FDA approval this March for a new quantitative RNA test which can help physicians see exactly what level of HCV exists in a patient’s blood instead of simply confirming an active infection. Earlier this year, in late January, the FDA granted approval to Merck & Co. (NYSE:MRK) for a once-daily single tablet treatment branded as Zepatier. Zepatier is another combination drug therapy which incorporates elbasvir and grazoprevir, both HCV RNA inhibitors, and is designed to treat patients having one of two strains of HCV, including the most common strain. A 12-week regimen of the treatment costs $54,600.

Blue Ribbon Panel of Advisors Announced for Biden Cancer Moonshot Initiative

Earlier this week the National Cancer Institute (NCI), which is part of the National Institutes of Health, announced a Blue Ribbon Panel of scientific experts, cancer leaders, and patient advocates that will work to inform the scientific direction and goals for Vice President Joe Biden’s National Cancer Moonshot Initiative. “Thanks to advances in science, we are now in a historically unique position to make profound improvements in the way we treat, detect, and prevent cancer,” said NIH Director Francis S. Collins, M.D., Ph.D. He is correct, and here is why.

Amici led by Eli Lilly file brief in Supreme Court in support of Sequenom certiorari petition

Rather than use the word ‘conflate’ to describe the mongrel mixture of patentability requirements the Supreme Court undertook in Mayo, the Eli Lilly brief characterizes the analysis employed by the Supreme Court as including a separate, implicit ‘threshold test’ for patentability that is applied even before consideration of the statutory patentability requirements. Eli Lilly hypothesizes that this ‘implicit exception was imposed to assure that patents cannot validly protect—or preempt access to—laws of nature, natural phenomena, or abstract ideas.’

IBM hits torrid patent pace in Q1 2016, invents cloud management and automotive tech

2016 has gotten off to a strong start for the company as the patent portfolio analysis tools at Innography are showing us that IBM has already earned 1,927 U.S. patents through the first three months of this year. Not surprisingly, much of IBM’s patent activities have been focused on computing devices, data sets, computing environment, storage devices and data structures. Natural language technologies are another area where IBM has pursued recent innovative advances. Likewise, we note a trio of patents recently issued to IBM in automotive and related sectors, starting with the crash damage mitigation technology, technologies for communicating information between vehicles, and enhanced methods of traffic routing involving stoplight timing.

Injectable migraine treatment being developed by Alder, Eli Lilly, Amgen and others

Migraines are the result of a hereditary neurological disorder which causes certain areas of the brain to become over-excited, creating the throbbing pain and increased sensitivity to lights, smells or sounds which characterize a migraine attack. Not much is known about the brain chemistry that directly causes a migraine, although it’s generally understood that hormonal fluctuations or environmental stimuli can act as triggers. News of successful mid-stage trials for a migraine treatment developed by Alder Biopharmaceuticals Inc. has been greeted with a warm welcome from news media. The results of the trial show that an injectable treatment known as ALD403 administered four times over the course of a year reduced patient suffering from chronic migraines.