News Flash – Ct of Appeals for the Federal Circuit Decides Myriad Appeal!

I haven’t had time to read the opinion yet – just the first few pages – but already it looks interesting.

The court a) found standing for at least one plaintiff, b) reversed Judge Sweet by finding that the composition of matter claims were valid, c) reversed Judge Sweet by finding that the cancer screening claims were valid, BUT d) upheld Judge Sweet by finding that the method claims for comparing the patented sequence to a patient’s sequence were NOT patentable subject matter.  Bilski lives?

Here’s the court’s summary paragraph.

On the threshold issue of jurisdiction, we affirm the district court’s decision to exercise declaratory judgment jurisdiction because we conclude that at least one plain- tiff, Dr. Harry Ostrer, has standing to challenge the validity of Myriad’s patents. On the merits, we reverse the district court’s decision that Myriad’s composition claims to “isolated” DNA molecules cover patent-ineligible products of nature under § 101 since the molecules as claimed do not exist in nature. We also reverse the dis- trict court’s decision that Myriad’s method claim to screening potential cancer therapeutics via changes in cell growth rates is directed to a patent-ineligible scientific principle. We, however, affirm the court’s decision that Myriad’s method claims directed to “comparing” or “ana- lyzing” DNA sequences are patent ineligible; such claims include no transformative steps and cover only patent- ineligible abstract, mental steps.