2007 saw slightly fewer fully contested first instance hearings in the life sciences sector in the English Patents Court on which judgment was given, than the previous year (on which we reported in March 2007). Moreover, the sector lost its clear dominance in such hearings of the previous year in terms of the number of patents in issue – in 2007 there were 9 patents in 7 decided actions in the life sciences sector, compared with 19 patents in 14 decided actions in total. In all except one case in the life sciences sector the main claims in issue were found invalid, and in that one case the patent was held not to be infringed.

To view table of hearings click here.

Of the first instance decisions that we listed in March 2007 the only matters which were the subject of appeal decisions in 2008 were Conor v Angiotech, in which the first instance decision of obviousness was upheld, and Novartis v Ivax, where the finding at first instance that one of the patents there in issue, for a formulation of cyclosporine, was not infringed, was also upheld.