On October 6, 2017, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (the “Board”) granted institution of inter partes review under 35 U.S.C. § 103(a) of claims directed to an online game. Notably, institution was granted despite the Board reserving determination on the patent owner’s argument that the petition should be denied under 35 U.S.C. § 315(b) as time-barred.
A Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) panel declined to institute an inter partes review (IPR) of a claim directed to a method for treating low grade B-cell non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. The challenged method required patients to be treated with cyclophosphamide, vincristine, and prednisone (CVP) chemotherapy, followed by four once-weekly doses of 375 mg/m2rituximab, an anti-CD20 antibody, every six months for two years.
On September 22, 2017, the United States Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) issued a final written decision regarding claims directed to a switching regulator comprising a power switch and a control circuit. The PTAB found all challenged claims obvious under 35 U.S.C. § 103 based on the combination of two prior art references. In so doing, the PTAB ruled on motions to exclude filed by both petitioner and patent owner. While the parties’ motions were denied or dismissed as moot for several exhibits, the PTAB excluded portions of declaration testimony as hearsay under Rule 402 of the Federal Rules of Evidence.
In cases where petitioners want a “second bite at the IPR apple,” the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) has issued an informative decision stating that it wants an explanation for the delay between the original and follow-on petitions. In General Plastic v. Canon, where the petitioner submitted follow-on petitions, but did not include an explanation about why the prior art could not have been found earlier and why the follow-on petitions could not have been submitted sooner, the PTAB denied institution and a request for rehearing for the follow-on petitions.
On September 9, 2017, an Eastern District of Texas magistrate judge issued a report and recommendation holding that a plaintiff was estopped from asserting its patent infringement claims because statements made in response to an inter partes review (IPR) petition constituted a disclaimer.
In an August 18, 2017, decision, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB or the “Board”) granted a patent owner’s request for rehearing and modified a previously issued Final Written Decision to hold that the petitioner failed to show that any of the challenged claims were unpatentable.
In Broad-Ocean Technologies, Inc. v. Regal Beloit America, Inc., No. IPR2017-00802 (PTAB Aug. 22, 2017), Broad-Ocean sought to institute an inter partes review (IPR) of a patent owned by Regal Beloit (the “’476 patent”). Broad-Ocean and Regal are competing manufacturers of electric motors and power generation products. Regal had previously sued Broad-Ocean in the Eastern District of Missouri for infringing the ’476 patent, which covers a “Snap-Fit  Housing Assembly and Seal Method” for a combustion furnace blower.
In a report and recommendation issued Tuesday, August 15, 2017, a magistrate judge in the Eastern District of Texas stated that failure to provide a patent examiner with a copy of a relevant post-grant review (PGR) institution decision does not make a patent unenforceable for inequitable conduct.