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Illumina Asks US Patent Office to Investigate Affymetrix IP

NEW YORK, Oct. 25 (GenomeWeb News) - Illumina has asked the US Patent and Trademark Office to investigate the validity of a patent owned by Affymetrix's newly integrated ParAllele BioScience unit because Illumina said its scientists had originally invented the technology, the company said today.

 

Illumina said it has asked the USPTO for an "Interference" with US Patent No. 6,858,412, which covers molecular inversion probe genotyping technology developed by ParAllele. Whomever the USPTO identifies as the "first to invent" is "ultimately awarded ownership and entitlement to the invention under USpatent law," Illumina said.

 

Though the technology was invented by Illumina's scientists "during the course of early research and development at the company," it is "not currently in use" at Illumina, the company said in a statement. As such, the company's request for interference is based on a patent application describing the invention, which Illumina said it had filed ahead of the '412 patent. 

 

"The earlier filing date is expected to establish Illumina as the 'senior party' in the Interference proceeding, placing on the '412 patent inventors the burden of proof to establish an earlier date of invention," Illumina said in the statement.

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