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Semiconductor Chips and Stem Cells: New Wine for New Bottles? . Professor Simone A. Rose WFU School of Law Copyright 2007. Which one does not belong?. Semiconductor Chips/ Integrated Circuits.
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New Wine for New Bottles?
Professor Simone A. Rose
WFU School of Law
After 1st chip design patented, later designs failed to meet §102 Novelty/ §103 Non-Obviousness requirements.
See: 35 U.S.C. §§102-103
Problem: Even if “mask” contains copyrightable expression, can’t separate expression from utility…(no actual or ‘conceptual’ seperability)
See: e.g. Mazer v. Stein, 347 U.S. 201 (1954)What is the problem with copyrighting “Mask Works”?
See: H.R. Rep. No. 281, Cong, 2d Sess. (1984)
Stem cells are one of today’s “basic biological building blocks”
(exist at the earliest stage of development and grow into variety of types.)
Benefits: Used to replace defective cells, used to research, treat & cure host of diseases.
Semiconductor chips are computers (information technology) “basic building blocks”Stem Cells – Semiconductor Chips
b. Embryonic stem cells (controversial, but more powerful useful) “pluripotent” – can turn into all of the body’s cell types except sperm and egg cells. Develop 5 -14 days after egg fertilized, found in interior of blastocyst.Two Main Stem Cell Types
See: Margo A. Bagley Patent First, Ask Questions Later: Morality and Biotechnology in PatentLaw, 45 William & Mary Law Review 469 (2003)Patent “Bargain” Defects
Thompson Family of embryonic stem cell line/methods patents recently held unpatentable upon reexaminnation. (3/30/07) (5/31- WARF limits claims to pre-implantation embryos & files response; 6/29-PUBPAT ctrs with comments).
Why? §102 novelty+ §103 obviousness
Does KSR v. Teleflex strengthen PTO’s position?
* same problem semiconductor chips inventors faced after 1st patent issued.Patent “Bargain” Defects(continued)
4. Utility - often hard to define specific utility with embryonic stem cells since “upstream” research toolsPatent “Bargain” Defects(continued)