Cases & Deals

Merial wins dismissal of patent claims directed to ineligible subject matter

Client(s) Merial Limited

Jones Day, with Merial Limited's Global Head of Intellectual Property, Dr. Judy Jarecki-Black, Esq., successfully defended Merial in a patent infringement case brought by Genetic Technologies Limited ("GTG"). GTG accused Merial and numerous other biotechnology and pharmaceuticals companies of infringing U.S. Patent No. 5,612,179, titled "Intron Sequence Analysis Method for Detection of Adjacent and Remote Locus Alleles as Haplotypes" ("the '179 patent"). The case was brought in the United States District Court for the District of Colorado, but Merial prevailed in having GTG's claim against it severed from those against the other defendants and transferred to Delaware. Thereafter, Merial moved the Delaware court to dismiss GTG's claim pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) on the ground that the '179 patent claims a law of nature that is not eligible for patent protection under 35 U.S.C. Section 101. After the Delaware court ruled in Merial's favor--finding that claim 1 of the '179 patent impermissibly claims a natural phenomenon and granting Merial's motion with regard to this claim--GTG stipulated to the dismissal of the remaining claims.

J. Patrick Elsevier, Ph.D. (San Diego) argued the motion to dismiss before the Delaware District Court.

Genetic Technologies Limited v. Merial L.L.C., Case No. 1-12-cv-00396 (D. Del.) (Judge Robinson)