BIO Calls for Balanced Solution to PTO Workload Challenges in Wake of Federal Court Decision Enjoining PTO Rules

Hails Ruling As A “Sound Decision”WASHINGTON, D.C. (Tuesday, April 01, 2008) - Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) President and CEO Jim Greenwood issued the following statement regarding the order issued today by the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia which permanently enjoins the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) from putting its new claims and continuation rules into effect (SmithKline Beecham Corporation et al. v. Jon W. Dudas and the United States Patent and Trademark Office):

“Today’s ruling enjoining the PTO from implementing its controversial rules on continuations and claims is a sound decision that reflects the concerns we expressed in our amicus brief.  The rules enjoined today, if permitted to go into effect, would have inhibited the ability of biotechnology innovators to obtain adequate patent protection on their technologies, significantly decreasing their ability to attract the financing necessary to bring innovative, life-enhancing and life-saving products to market.

“Today’s order underscores the need to develop a viable and workable solution to the legitimate workload challenge at the PTO.  We stand ready to work with the PTO to develop an approach that fairly allocates responsibility for patent quality between patent applicants and patent examiners and enhances the strength and integrity of the American patent system, while not stifling innovation or placing a disproportionate burden on any one industry.”

BIO’s amicus brief is available at


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BIO represents more than 1,200 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations across the United States and in more than 30 other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development of innovative healthcare, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products. BIO also produces the annual BIO International Convention, the world’s largest gathering of the biotechnology industry, along with industry-leading investor and partnering meetings held around the world.