Sequence-and-Targets-picWhen you work with DNA or protein sequences, inevitably, you’re going to run into the challenge of finding similar biological sequences that have been listed in patents. In most cases, you’re likely to know specific mutations at specific positions that you want to search for. The challenge is, how do you define a query that delivers a manageable set of results?

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After the United States Supreme Court ruling in the Association for Molecular Pathology v. Myriad Genetics in June of 2013, the industry scurried. The Court ruled that naturally occurring DNA is not patent eligible even if isolated, but cDNA or “complementary DNA” is because it is not naturally occurring but rather a product of the laboratory scientist even though it is exactly the same nucleic acid information.

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Update: GQ-Pat now has over 334 million sequences

Back in July we reported that there were 300 million sequences in GQ-Pat, including 256 million nucleotide sequences and over 45 million protein sequences.  And these protein sequences aren’t just automated translations of nuceotides like TrEMBL. All of these sequences are in fact found in patents and patent applications from patent authorities around the world.

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biosimilar drugsAbout a week ago, the FTC filed a suit against Endo Pharmaceuticals (among others) for blocking generic competition of its Opana ER and Lidoderm products. It is alleging that in addition to paying to delay competitive products, Endo used a no-AG commitment that gave Watson Laboratories more than 7 months of their own monopoly on the market during which Endo would not compete.

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It’s hard not to notice that the future is arriving faster than ever. Innovations are arriving at breakneck speed. In just the last couple of years we have seen things like self-driving cars, software that beats Jeopardy!, bipedal robots that can navigate difficult terrain just like humans do, and a very convincing defeat of one of the world’s best Go players by Google’s DeepMind technology. These are all things that knowledgeable people predicted would still be decades away, yet they are all happening right now. Why is that, and what does that have to do with your IP strategy?

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