Patently O has blogged the results of the Regents of the University of California and the University of Iowa Research Foundation going head-to-head over a patents covering material that desensitizes people to allergens. Cali filed its patent application, Iowa filed its patent application and the Patent Office granted Iowa’s patent. Cali amended its patent claims to make them similar to Iowa’s and requested the Patent Office declare a patent interference.
A patent interference is a complex process of determining which inventor of two or more pending patent applications has the right to the invention. Although Cali filed first, the claims that made the patent applications similar enough to declare an interference were not filed at least one year before the Patent Office issued the Iowa patent. The Federal Circuit examined the case and ruled this month that Iowa is the winner. Now if we can just get the Regents to spend some of these mind-boggling attorney fees within the state.