Current situation of stem cells research and issues of the patentability of stem cells
Szabolcs Farkas - Erika Toure-Ágoston
This article gives an overview of the present state of patentability of stem cells. Different countries have different practice on patenting stem cells. According to Rule 23b(1) EPC, the Directive 98/44/EC of 6 July 1998 on the legal protection of biotechnological inventions shall be used as a supplementary means of interpretation. Article 7 of the Directive states that the European Group on Ethics is charged with the general evaluation of the ethical aspects of biotechnology. On May 7, the European Group on Ethics indicated, in its 16th opinion, under what conditions, products and processes involving human stem cells are patentable. This opinion will be a source of new debates. Recently no unified practice on patenting of stem cells exists.
Patentability of computer-implemented inventions
The current legal situation regarding patent protection in the field of computer implemented inventions is ambiguous, and thus lacks legal certainty. Computer programs "as such" are excluded from patentability by the European Patent Convention and by Member State's patent laws but thousands of patents for computer-implemented inventions have been granted by the European Patent Office and by national patent offices. There are differences between the case law and the administrative practices of different Member States, which have direct and negative effects on the proper functioning of the internal market. The Directive on the patentability of computer implemented inventions will harmonise national patent laws and make the conditions of patentability more transparent, clear and certain. We show also the Directive's influence on the Hungarian practice in the field.
Persons entitled to apply for and obtain European patents as well as the right of the inventor to be mentioned
Dr. Tivadar Palágyi
This article gives an overview and comments on Chapter II of Part II of the European Patent Convention. Accordingly, based on Articles 58 to 62, it treats the entitlement to file a European patent application, the multiple applicants, the right to a European patent, and the European patent applications by persons not having the right to a European patent. Finally it discusses the right of the inventor to be mentioned.
Suspension and interruption of the granting procedure as reflected in European legal cases
This article gives an overview of the suspension and interruption of the proceedings for grant of the patent on the basis of the decisions of Boards of Appeal of the European Patent Office. The suspension was ordered under Rule 13 (1) EPC on the basis of initiating a lawsuit about the property of the invention.
The interruption was ordered under Rule 90 (1) (b) and Rule 90 (4) because of the receivership of the applicant company.