High Court concludes that methods of medical treatment are patentable
On 4 December 2013, the High Court judgment in Apotex Pty Ltd v Sanofi-Aventis Australia Pty Ltd & ors  HCA 50 was delivered. This is the first occasion that the High Court has considered whether methods of medical treatment of the human body are patentable inventions within the meaning of section 18(1) of the Patents Act 1990 (cth). The majority of the High Court concluded they were, while providing important guidance on contributory (or indirect) infringement in the context of patents which claim methods of medical treatment.
By way of background, the patent in issue was Australian Patent No 670491, entitled ’Pharmaceutical for the treatment of skin disorders’. Relevantly, the patent claims: ‘[a] method of preventing or treating a skin disorder wherein the skin disorder is psoriasis, which comprises administering to a recipient an effective amount of [leflunomide].’ Sanofi-Aventis Australia Pty Ltd (Sanofi) markets leflunomide in Australia under the brand name ARAVA.
In 2008, Apotex Pty Ltd (Apotex) obtained registrations for a generic leflunomide product. Shortly thereafter, Sanofi commenced infringement proceedings largely relying on section 117 of the Patents Act 1990 (Cth) which relates to contributory (or indirect) infringement…
If you are registered and logged in to the site, click on the link below to read the rest of the DLA Piper briefing. If not, please register or sign in with your details below.
Sign in or Register to continue reading this article
It's quick, easy and free!
It takes just 5 minutes to register. Answer a few simple questions and once completed you’ll have instant access.Register now
Why register to The Lawyer
In-depth, expert analysis into the stories behind the headlines from our leading team of journalists.
Identify the major players and business opportunities within a particular region through our series of free, special reports.
Receive your pick of The Lawyer's daily and weekly email newsletters, tailored by practice area, region and job function.
More relevant to you
To continue providing the best analysis, insight and news across the legal market we are collecting some information about who you are, what you do and where you work to improve The Lawyer and make it more relevant to you.
News from DLA Piper
News from The Lawyer
Briefings from DLA Piper
The Australian Taxation Office released a draft ruling on the Goods and Services Tax treatment of bitcoin transactions on 20 August 2014.
DLA Piper’s ‘Life sciences: patent extension strategies and antitrust global update’ video covers global antitrust and competition issues including product hopping and reverse payment patents.
Analysis from The Lawyer
Regulators are ramping up the pressure in the aftermath of recession, leaving firms to compete for compliance and restructuring work
Shearman & Sterling is making its presence felt in the City, squaring up to magic circle firms and looking to muscle in on key relationships. Private equity house Bridgepoint is one outfit that has had its head turned by the US firm.