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Nucleonics Asks US Patent Office to Re-examine Benitec RNAi Patent

NEW YORK, Oct. 4 (GenomeWeb News) - Nucleonics has requested the US Patent and Trademark Office to re-examine an RNAi patent held by Benitec and the Australian Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization, the Horsham, Pa.-based company said today.


The patent Nucleonics asked to be re-examined is US Patent Number 6,573,099, entitled "Genetic Constructs For Delayingt Or Repressing The Expression Of A Target Gene." Nucleonics said it has submitted prior art documents not previously considered by the USPTO showing that Benitec and CSIRO's patent claims are invalid because they lack novelty or were obvious at the time the patent application was filed.


"The filing of this request ... is yet another step in our ongoing effort to use all available legal avenues to expose the inherent weaknesses in Benitec's patent portfolio," said Nucleonics CEO Robert Towarnicki in a company statement.


Last month, Nucleonics challenged another Benitec RNAi patent in AustraliaIn March, Benitec filed a patent infringement suit in the USagainst Nucelonics and others for the patent. In August, Benitec settled with GenScript and Ambioin, the two other companies that were named in the suit.

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