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Patents pending

Writing in Legal Times, Tony Mauro reports on yesterday's Supreme Court arguments over the reaches of U.S. patent law:

"Supreme Court justices appeared reluctant Tuesday to decide a key patent law case in a way that would, as one justice put it, establish 'monopolies in this country beyond belief' over naturally occurring phenomena.

Justice Stephen Breyer expressed that concern during oral arguments in Laboratory Corp. of America v. Metabolite, a dispute that tests the scope of patentability. Other justices indicated sympathy with the solicitor general's view that the case should be sent back to lower courts for further review."

An editorial in The New York Times calls the case a reminder that the system has become Patently Ridiculous:

"The Supreme Court now appears ready to weigh in and -- we hope -- restore some sanity to the system. Yesterday the court heard arguments on whether the patent for a blood test for a vitamin deficiency was so broadly construed that it included a natural process of the human body and the idea of how to interpret it. Such a patent could prevent other inventors from developing new and better tests. The court will also hear arguments next week in a case attacking eBay, the global marketplace."

More information on the case is available from the Supreme Court's docket.

Posted by Robert J. Ambrogi on March 22, 2006 at 10:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

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