And then give it one more proofreading just to make sure. [Jose Daniel on Twitter]
Always make sure you give your patent application a last minute review. ? pic.twitter.com/SqrHbJ2Yfu
— Jose Daniel (@JoseDRengifoM) May 31, 2019
Not a new story, but new to me: Oklahoma State University says it has been awarded patent as well as trademark protection on what is called the Vegas Strip Steak, a part of the cow previously consigned to ground beef and other humble uses. [John Klein, Tulsa World last October; Drovers, John Ewoldt, Minneapolis Star-Tribune in 2012]
Kal Raustiala and Chris Sprigman wrote at Freakonomics in 2012:
There’s no way OSU could patent the steak itself. The steak is just a piece of a cow. It is, in other words, a product of nature, which cannot be patented.
Wisely, OSU’s patent apparently isn’t on the steak itself, but on the knife cuts necessary to extract the steak. But that approach is dubious as well. Once you know where the steak is, the cuts necessary to get at it may be obvious to a skilled butcher. Things that are obvious cannot be patented.
The Patent and Trademark Office presumably accepted the methods for producing the cut as other than obvious. More on patented meat items from Article One Partners.
Mostly Cato links:
Allergan: we’ve transferred the patents for our dry-eye drug Restasis to the St. Regis Mohawk tribe, so now the Patent Trial and Appeal Board and our competitors can just go take a hike. The move follows a January decision by the PTAB to drop “a case against the University of Florida citing its sovereign immunity as a state institution. After that ruling, Michael Shore, a lawyer at Shore Chan DePumpo LLP in Dallas that represented the university, said the firm began looking for an Indian tribe that was interested in taking advantage of the ‘arbitrage opportunity.'” Rivals can still challenge the patents’ continuing validity in federal court, but that is a more cumbersome process. [Jonathan D. Rockoff, WSJ]
“When was the last time that America’s chair industry hiked the price of chairs 400% and suddenly nobody in the country could afford to sit down?” Funny, isn’t it, how these episodes keep happening in a sector of the economy where a new competitor, before being allowed to enter even a well-understood generic market, faces the prospect of unpredictable and expensive government denials and delays? [Scott Alexander]
More: Scott Gottlieb on how the new, more ardently regulatory FDA keeps generic drugs (and devices) off the market. Don’t blame the patent angle; EpiPen is off-patent [Timothy Holbrook, The Conversation]
Amy Maxmen, Wired on the advances in DNA editing (via Jason Kuznicki):
But the attorney filing for Zhang checked a box on the application marked “accelerate” and paid a fee, usually somewhere between $2,000 and $4,000. A series of emails followed between agents at the US Patent and Trademark Office and the Broad’s patent attorneys, who argued that their claim was distinct.
A little more than a year after those human-cell papers came out, Doudna was on her way to work when she got an email telling her that Zhang, the Broad Institute, and MIT had indeed been awarded the patent on Crispr-Cas9 as a method to edit genomes. “I was quite surprised,” she says, “because we had filed our paperwork several months before he had.”
Despite today’s polarized political atmosphere, it is possible to construct an ambitious and highly promising agenda of pro-growth policy reform that can command support across the ideological spectrum. Such an agenda would focus on policies whose primary effect is to inflate the incomes and wealth of the rich, the powerful, and the well-established by shielding them from market competition. A convenient label for these policies is “regressive regulation” — regulatory barriers to entry and competition that work to redistribute income and wealth up the socioeconomic scale. This paper identifies four major examples of regressive regulation: excessive monopoly privileges granted under copyright and patent law; restrictions on high-skilled immigration; protection of incumbent service providers under occupational licensing; and artificial scarcity created by land-use regulation.