Aptalis Fails to “Surround’ Apotex’s Generic ER Tablet

Although non-precedential, Aptalis Pharmatech, Inc. v. Apotex, Inc., Appeal No. 2017-1344 (Fed. Cir., January 4, 2018) provides a useful outline of Phillips-type claim construction and requires a close reading to see why the infringement finding by the district court was reversed.

In this Hatch-Waxman litigation, Aptalis asserted U.S. Pat. Nos. 7,790,199 and 7,289,121 against Apotex’s extended release (ER) version of cyclobenzaprine hydrochloride (“the drug”). The Fed. Cir. panel noted that there are two routes to make ER tablets disclosed in the patents – the membrane system in which an inert core is coated with the active drug yielding a core that is further coated with polymer membrane that controls the rate of release of the drug from the tablet once it is ingested, and the matrix system in which the tablets are formed by mixing the drug with the polymer and granulating it to yield beads with ER properties. Continue reading

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The Twelve §101 Precedential Decisions of 2017

2017 Year in Review - Patents

This is a guest post from the Chisum Patent Academy.

In 2017, Federal Circuit panels regularly addressed attacks on software patent claims as ineligible under the Alice “abstract idea” exception.

The 2017 pattern, with 8 of 10 decisions finding software claims not eligible, was similar to that in 2016 (10 of 14).

The penultimate patent-invalidating decision of the year, Smart Systems (by Judge Wallach) drew an impassioned partial dissent by Judge Linn, protesting that the “abstract idea exception” was “almost impossible to apply consistently and coherently.” Hard to dispute that! Continue reading

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Aqua Products Sinks PTAB Decision in Bosch v. Matal

The odd title of this post arose from the fact that defendant Autel U.S., Inc. chose not to appeal its IPR win against Bosch that included invalidation of the claims in suit, and the refusal of the Board to enter an amended claim set proposed by Bosch. With Autel out of the picture, the PTO effectively represented the Board and Acting Director Matal was named as the defendant: Bosch Automotive Service Solutions, LLC v. Joseph Matal (Intervenor), Appeal no. 2015-1928 (Fed. Cir., December 22, 2017). Continue reading

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Anticipat Discusses Success in Overturning Abstract Idea Rejections on Appeal

For difficult grounds of rejection, the right advocacy can make all the difference. The right counsel can know when to appeal and how to win on appeal. Here, we explore the demographic of firms that represent appellants that overturn one of the most difficult of all rejections: Section 101 abstract idea. Recent data show that while some big/specialized firms are successful, others without the same name recognition also are doing relatively well. Continue reading

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