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The Cost Of Novelty, Will Nicholson Price Ii Mar 2020

The Cost Of Novelty, Will Nicholson Price Ii

Articles

Patent law tries to spur the development of new and better innova­tive technology. But it focuses much more on “new” than “better”—and it turns out that “new” carries real social costs. I argue that patent law promotes innovation that diverges from existing technology, either a little (what I call “differentiating innovation”) or a lot (“exploring innova­tion”), at the expense of innovation that tells us more about existing technology (“deepening innovation”). Patent law’s focus on newness is unsurprising, and fits within a well-told narrative of innovative diversity accompanied by market selection of the best technologies. Unfortunately, innovative ...


A Functional Approach To Judicial Review Of Ptab Rulings On Mixed Questions Of Law And Fact, Rebecca S. Eisenberg Jul 2019

A Functional Approach To Judicial Review Of Ptab Rulings On Mixed Questions Of Law And Fact, Rebecca S. Eisenberg

Articles

The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (“Federal Circuit”) has long relied on active appellate review to bring uniformity and clarity to patent law. It initially treated the PTO the same as the federal district courts, reviewing its factual findings for clear error and its legal conclusions de novo. Following reversal by the Supreme Court in Dickinson v. Zurko, the Federal Circuit began giving greater deference to PTO factual findings. But it continued to review the PTO’s legal conclusions de novo, while coding an expansive list of disputed issues in patent cases as legal conclusions, even when they ...


Opting Into Device Regulation In The Face Of Uncertain Patentability, Rebecca S. Eisenberg Jun 2019

Opting Into Device Regulation In The Face Of Uncertain Patentability, Rebecca S. Eisenberg

Articles

This article examines the intersection of patent law, FDA regulation, and Medicare coverage in a particularly promising field of biomedical innovation: genetic diagnostic testing. First, I will discuss current clinical uses of genetic testing and directions for further research, with a focus on cancer, the field in which genetic testing has had the greatest impact to date. Second, I will turn to patent law and address two recent Supreme Court decisions that called into question the patentability of many of the most important advances in genetic testing. Third, I will step outside patent law to take a broader view of ...


Universities: The Fallen Angels Of Bayh-Dole?, Rebecca S. Eisenberg, Robert Cook-Deegan Oct 2018

Universities: The Fallen Angels Of Bayh-Dole?, Rebecca S. Eisenberg, Robert Cook-Deegan

Articles

The Bayh-Dole Act of 1980 established a new default rule that allowed nonprofit organizations and small businesses to own, as a routine matter, patents on inventions resulting from research sponsored by the federal government. Although universities helped get the Bayh-Dole Act through Congress, the primary goal, as reflected in the recitals at the beginning of the new statute, was not to benefit universities but to promote the commercial development and utilization of federally funded inventions. In the years since the passage of the Bayh-Dole Act, universities seem to have lost sight of this distinction. Their behavior as patent seekers, patent ...


Expired Patients, Trade Secrets, And Stymied Competition, W. Nicholson Price Ii Jan 2017

Expired Patients, Trade Secrets, And Stymied Competition, W. Nicholson Price Ii

Articles

Patents and trade secrecy have long been considered substitute incentives for innovation. When inventors create a new invention, they traditionally must choose between the two. And if inventors choose to patent their invention, society provides strong legal protection in exchange for disclosure, with the understanding that the protection has a limit: it expires twenty years from the date of filing. At that time, the invention is opened to the public and exposed to competition. This story is incomplete. Patent disclosure is weak and focuses on one technical piece of an invention—but that piece is often only a part of ...


In The Stewardship Of Business Model Innovation, Robert W. Gomulkiewicz Jan 2015

In The Stewardship Of Business Model Innovation, Robert W. Gomulkiewicz

Articles

Patent law scholars often criticize the Federal Circuit because they think it favors patentees. The Supreme Court has reinforced this scholarly critique by taking an usually large number of patent cases in recent years, often reversing the Federal Circuit and admonishing it to avoid patent law exceptionalism.

The Federal Circuit’s perceived patent law exceptionalism motivated Professor Xuan-Thao Nguyen to write her article In the Name of Patent Stewardship: The Federal Circuit’s Overreach into Commercial Law. Professor Nguyen’s concerns about damage to commercial law are not trifles. When it comes to the stewardship of our information economy, the ...


Actavis, The Reverse Payment Fallacy, And The Continuing Need For Regulatory Solutions, Daniel A. Crane Jan 2014

Actavis, The Reverse Payment Fallacy, And The Continuing Need For Regulatory Solutions, Daniel A. Crane

Articles

The Actavis decision punted more than it decided. Although narrowing the range of possible outcomes by rejecting the legal rules at the extremes and opting for a rule of reason middle ground, the opinion failed to grapple with the most challenging issues of regulatory policy raised by pharmaceutical patent settlements. In particular, it failed to clearly delineate the social costs of permitting and disallowing patent settlements, avoided grappling with the crucial issues of patent validity and infringement, and erroneously focused on “reverse payments” as a distinctive antitrust problem when equally or more anticompetitive settlements can be crafted without reverse payments ...


Prometheus Rebound: Diagnostics, Nature, And Mathematical Algorithms, Rebecca S. Eisenberg Jan 2013

Prometheus Rebound: Diagnostics, Nature, And Mathematical Algorithms, Rebecca S. Eisenberg

Articles

The Supreme Court’s decision last Term in Mayo v. Prometheus left considerable uncertainty as to the boundaries of patentable subject matter for molecular diagnostic inventions. First, the Court took an expansive approach to what counts as an unpatentable natural law by applying that term to the relationship set forth in the challenged patent between a patient’s levels of a drug metabolite and the indication of a need to adjust the patient’s drug dosage. And second, in evaluating whether the patent claims add enough to this unpatentable natural law to be patent eligible, the Court did not consult ...


Wisdom Of The Ages Or Dead-Hand Control? Patentable Subject Matter For Diagnostic Methods After In Re Bilski, Rebecca S. Eisenberg Jan 2012

Wisdom Of The Ages Or Dead-Hand Control? Patentable Subject Matter For Diagnostic Methods After In Re Bilski, Rebecca S. Eisenberg

Articles

In 1980, the Supreme Court gave a reassuring signal to the then-nascent biotechnology industry about the availability of patent protection for the fruits of its research when it upheld the patentability of a genetically modified living organism in Diamond v. Chakrabarty. Twenty-five years later, the Court seemed poised to reexamine the limits of patentable subject matter for advances in the life sciences when it granted certiorari in Laboratory Corporation v. Metabolite. But the Federal Circuit had not addressed the patentable subject matter issue in Laboratory Corporation, and the Court ultimately dismissed the certiorari p etition as improvidently granted. Five years ...


Patent Costs And Unlicensed Use Of Patented Inventions, Rebecca S. Eisenberg Jan 2011

Patent Costs And Unlicensed Use Of Patented Inventions, Rebecca S. Eisenberg

Articles

Recent commentators have observed, and sometimes lamented, significant gaps between the formal reach of the patent system and the practical exclusionary effect of patent law. It is costly for technology developers to obtain and assert patents, for technology users to identify the patents they might be infringing and to clear rights, and for the Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) to find patent-defeating prior art. The costs of the patent system provide shelter for infringing behavior that might otherwise lead to either licensing or liability, perhaps mitigating excesses in the patent system while retaining strong rights that motivated owners may enforce ...


Intellectual Liability, Daniel A. Crane Jan 2009

Intellectual Liability, Daniel A. Crane

Articles

Intellectual property is increasingly a misnomer since the right to exclude is the defining characteristic of property and incentives to engage in inventive and creative activity are increasingly being granted in the form of liability rights (which allow the holder of the right to collect a royalty from users) rather than property rights (which allow the holder of the right to exclude others from using the invention or creation). Much of this recent reorientation in the direction of liability rules arises from a concern over holdout or monopoly power in intellectual property. The debate over whether liability rules or property ...


Pharma's Nonobvious Problem, Rebecca S. Eisenberg Jan 2008

Pharma's Nonobvious Problem, Rebecca S. Eisenberg

Articles

This Article considers the effect of the recent decision of the U.S. Supreme Court in KSR International Co. v. Teleflex, Inc. on the nonobviousness standard for patentability as applied to pharmaceutical patents. By calling for an expansive and flexible analysis and disapproving of the use of rigid formulas in evaluating an invention for obviousness, KSR may appear to make it easier for generic competitors to challenge the validity of drug patents. But an examination of the Federal Circuit's nonobviousness jurisprudence in the context of such challenges reveals that the Federal Circuit has been employing all along the sort ...


Noncompliance, Nonenforcement, Nonproblem? Rethinking The Anticommons In Biomedical Research, Rebecca S. Eisenberg Jan 2008

Noncompliance, Nonenforcement, Nonproblem? Rethinking The Anticommons In Biomedical Research, Rebecca S. Eisenberg

Articles

A decade ago the biomedical research community was sounding alarm bells about the impact of intellectual property (IP) rights on the ability of scientists to do their work. Controversies and delays in negotiating terms of access to patented mice and genes, databases of scientific information, and tangible research materials all pointed toward the same conclusion: that IP claims were undermining traditional sharing norms to the detriment of science. Michael Heller and I highlighted one dimension of this concern: that too many IP rights in "upstream" research results could paradoxically restrict "downstream" research and product development by making it too costly ...


The Supreme Court And The Federal Circuit: Visitation And Custody Of Patent Law, Rebecca S. Eisenberg Jan 2007

The Supreme Court And The Federal Circuit: Visitation And Custody Of Patent Law, Rebecca S. Eisenberg

Articles

The U.S. Supreme Court’s relationship to patent law sometimes seems like that of a non-custodial parent who spends an occasional weekend with the kids. The custodial parent is, of course, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. The Federal Courts Improvement Act of 1982 consolidated intermediate appellate jurisdiction over patent law cases in this single court, which hears appeals from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (“PTO”), the U.S. District Courts, the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, and the U.S. In-ternational Trade Commission. Day to day it is the Federal Circuit ...


Tax Strategies Are Not Patentable Inventions, Andrew A. Schwartz Jan 2006

Tax Strategies Are Not Patentable Inventions, Andrew A. Schwartz

Articles

No abstract provided.


Harnessing And Sharing The Benefits Of State-Sponsored Research: Intellectual Property Rights And Data Sharing In California's Stem Cell Initiative, Rebecca S. Eisenberg, Arti K. Rai Jan 2006

Harnessing And Sharing The Benefits Of State-Sponsored Research: Intellectual Property Rights And Data Sharing In California's Stem Cell Initiative, Rebecca S. Eisenberg, Arti K. Rai

Articles

This Article discusses data sharing in California's stem cell initiative against the background of other data sharing efforts and in light of the competing interests that CIRM is directed to balance. We begin by considering how IP law affects data sharing. We then assess the strategic considerations that guide the IP and data policies and strategies of federal, state, and private research sponsors. With this background, we discuss four specific sets of issues that public sponsors of data-rich research, including CIRM, are likely to confront: (1) how to motivate researchers to contribute data; (2) who should have access to ...


The Problem Of New Uses, Rebecca S. Eisenberg Jan 2005

The Problem Of New Uses, Rebecca S. Eisenberg

Articles

Discovering new uses for drugs that are already on the market seems like it ought to be the low-lying fruit of biopharmaceutical research and development (R&D). Firms have already made significant investments in developing these drugs and bringing them to market, including testing them in clinical trials, shepherding them through the FDA regulatory approval process, building production facilities, and training sales staff to market them to physicians. By this point, the drugs have begun to enjoy goodwill among patients and physicians and casual observations in the course of clinical experience may point to potential new uses. One might expect ...


Obvious To Whom? Evaluating Inventions From The Perspective Of Phosita, Rebecca S. Eisenberg Jan 2004

Obvious To Whom? Evaluating Inventions From The Perspective Of Phosita, Rebecca S. Eisenberg

Articles

In this Article, I consider the possibility of giving the USPTO input from currently active technological practitioners in evaluating the obviousness of claimed inventions. Such input could potentially serve three useful functions. First, it could improve the accuracy of USPTO decisionmaking by providing access to the perspective of actual practitioners as to the obviousness of inventions from the perspective of the hypothetical PHOSITA. Second, it could help the USPTO document the evidentiary basis for rejections that rest in part upon tacit knowledge within technological communities. Third, it could provide a quality control mechanism that would improve the credibility of USPTO ...


Bayh-Dole Reform And The Progress Of Biomedicine, Arti K. Rai, Rebecca S. Eisenberg Jan 2003

Bayh-Dole Reform And The Progress Of Biomedicine, Arti K. Rai, Rebecca S. Eisenberg

Articles

Allowing universities to patent the results of government-sponsored research sometimes works against the public interest.


Bayh-Dole Reform And The Progress Of Biomedicine, Arti K. Rai, Rebecca S. Eisenberg Jan 2003

Bayh-Dole Reform And The Progress Of Biomedicine, Arti K. Rai, Rebecca S. Eisenberg

Articles

Advances in fundamental biomedical research play an important and growing role in the development of new therapeutic and diagnostic products. Although the development of pharmaceutical end products has long been a proprietary enterprise, biomedical research comes from a very different tradition of open science. Within this tradition, long-standing norms call for relatively unfettered access to fundamental knowledge developed by prior researchers. The tradition of open science has eroded considerably over the past quarter century as proprietary claims have reached farther upstream from end products to cover fundamental discoveries that provide the knowledge base for future product development.


Re-Examining The Role Of Patents In Appropriating The Value Of Dna Sequences, Rebecca S. Eisenberg Jan 2000

Re-Examining The Role Of Patents In Appropriating The Value Of Dna Sequences, Rebecca S. Eisenberg

Articles

As public and private sector initiatives race to complete the sequence of the human genome, patent issues have played a prominent role in speculations about the significance of this achievement. How much of the genome will be subject to the control of patent holders, and what will this mean for future research and the development of products for the improvement of human health? Is a patent system developed to establish rights in mechanical inventions of an earlier era up to the task of resolving competing claims to the genome on behalf of the many sequential innovators who elucidate its sequence ...


The Promise And Perils Of Strategic Publication To Create Prior Art: A Response To Professor Parchomovsky, Rebecca S. Eisenberg Jan 2000

The Promise And Perils Of Strategic Publication To Create Prior Art: A Response To Professor Parchomovsky, Rebecca S. Eisenberg

Articles

In a provocative recent article in the Michigan Law Review, Professor Gideon Parchomovsky observes that a firm racing with a competitor to make a patentable invention might find it strategically advantageous to publish interim research results rather than risk losing a patent race. This strategy exploits legal rules limiting patent protection to technological advances that are new and "nonobvious" in light of the "prior art" or preexisting knowledge in the field. By publishing research results, a firm adds to the prior art and thereby limits what may be patented in the future. Parchomovsky posits that, before it is able to ...


Analyze This: A Law And Economics Agenda For The Patent System, Rebecca S. Eisenberg Jan 2000

Analyze This: A Law And Economics Agenda For The Patent System, Rebecca S. Eisenberg

Articles

Legal scholars and economists might enhance the value and impact of their work by making more effective use of each other's knowledge and capabilities. Legal scholars can offer a more nuanced understanding of the legal rules that underlie the patent system and the doctrinal levers that might be manipulated in furtherance of public policy goals. Economists bring to bear a set of analytical and methodological tools that could shed considerable light on what these doctrinal levers are doing and which of them we ought to be manipulating. Together, we have a better chance of asking the right questions and ...


The Antitrust Duty To Deal And Intellectual Property Rights, James C. Burling, William F. Lee, Anita K. Krug Jan 1999

The Antitrust Duty To Deal And Intellectual Property Rights, James C. Burling, William F. Lee, Anita K. Krug

Articles

This Article discusses how courts have addressed so-called ‘"duty-to-deal" antitrust claims involving intellectual property, and what they should do in those circumstances to ensure appropriate deference to the competition goals of intellectual property doctrine.

Part II discusses duty-to-deal principles in the general case, where intellectual property rights are not at issue, noting that hard and fast rules have yet to emerge.

Part III discusses the approaches courts have taken in the intellectual property context and contends that, although many courts have conducted their analyses with a view to the objectives of patent law, at least two have not, with potentially ...


Upstream Patents = Downstream Bottlenecks, Rebecca S. Eisenberg, Michael A. Heller Jan 1998

Upstream Patents = Downstream Bottlenecks, Rebecca S. Eisenberg, Michael A. Heller

Articles

Thirty years ago in Science, Garrett Hardin introduced the metaphor "tragedy of the commons" to help explain overpopulation, air pollution, and species extinction. People often overuse resources they own in common because they have no incentive to conserve. Today, Hardin's metaphor is central to debates in economics, law, and science and powerful justification for privatizing commons property. While the metaphor highlights the cost of overuse when governments allow too many people to use a scarce resource, it misses the possibility of underuse when governments give too many people rights to exclude others. Privatization can solve one tragedy, but cause ...


Intellectual Property At The Public-Private Divide: The Case Of Large-Scale Cdna Sequencing, Rebecca S. Eisenberg Jan 1996

Intellectual Property At The Public-Private Divide: The Case Of Large-Scale Cdna Sequencing, Rebecca S. Eisenberg

Articles

The Human Genome Project provides fertile ground for studying the role of intellectual property at the wavering boundary between public and private research science. It involves a major commitment of both public and private research funds in an area that is of significant interest both to research scientists working in university and government laboratories and to commercial firms. It thus provides a wealth of new scientific discoveries that are simultaneously potential candidates for commercial development and inputs into further research. Its obvious implications for human health raise the stakes of getting the balance between private property and public access right ...


Public Research And Private Development: Patents And Technology Transfer In Government-Sponsored Research, Rebecca S. Eisenberg Jan 1996

Public Research And Private Development: Patents And Technology Transfer In Government-Sponsored Research, Rebecca S. Eisenberg

Articles

This article revisits the logical and empirical basis for current government patent policy in order to shed light on the competing interests at stake and to begin to assess how the system is operating in practice. Such an inquiry is justified in part by the significance of federally-sponsored research and development to the overall U.S. research effort. Although the share of national expenditures for research and development borne by the federal government has declined since 1980, federal funding in 1995 still accounted for approximately thirty-six percent of total national outlays for research and development' and nearly fifty-eight percent of ...


A Technology Policy Perspective On The Nih Gene Patenting Controversy, Rebecca S. Eisenberg Jan 1994

A Technology Policy Perspective On The Nih Gene Patenting Controversy, Rebecca S. Eisenberg

Articles

This article will use the NIH patent controversy as a focal point for considering when the results of government-sponsored research should be patented and when they should be dedicated to the public domain. First, this article will review the recent history of federal government policy on patenting the results of government-sponsored research. Next, this article will highlight some of the complexities involved in achieving technology transfer from the public sector to the private sector that current policy may oversimplify. With this background, this article will return to a more detailed analysis of the NIH cDNA patenting controversy and consider the ...


Limiting The Role Of Patents In Technology Transfer, Rebecca Sue Eisenberg Jan 1993

Limiting The Role Of Patents In Technology Transfer, Rebecca Sue Eisenberg

Articles

Federal policy since 1980 has reflected an increasingly confident presumption that patenting discoveries made in the course of government-sponsored research is the most effective way to promote technology transfer and commercial development of those discoveries in the private sector. Whereas policymakers in the past may have thought that the best way to achieve widespread use of government-sponsored research was to make the results freely available to the public, the new propatent policy stresses the need for exclusive rights as an incentive for industry to undertake the further investment to bring new products to market. Although this propatent policy may make ...


Limiting The Role Of Patents In Technology Transfer, Rebecca S. Eisenberg Jan 1993

Limiting The Role Of Patents In Technology Transfer, Rebecca S. Eisenberg

Articles

Federal policy since 1980 has reflected an increasingly confident presumption that patenting discoveries made in the course of government-sponsored research is the most effective way to promote technology transfer and commercial development of those discoveries in the private sector. Whereas policymakers in the past may have thought that the best way to achieve widespread use of government-sponsored research was to make the results freely available to the public, the new propatent policy stresses the need for exclusive rights as an incentive for industry to undertake the further investment to bring new products to market. Although this propatent policy may make ...