The European Patent No. 1 491 552, covering microwave assisted solid phase peptide synthesis, has been upheld in an oral proceeding at the European Patent Office. The opposition proceeding had been initiated by Biotage in an attempt to revoke the patent. Biotage was unable to find or provide any new prior art that could be used to nullify the patent.
"We are very pleased with the outcome of the examination and with the result that the patent has been fully upheld," commented Michael J. Collins, PhD., president and CEO of CEM Corporation. "This confirms the fact that the patent is valid and enforceable. Microwave peptide synthesis, which was developed by CEM, has been shown to dramatically reduce cycle times and increase purity particularly for difficult sequences. It has become a major new enabling technology for the peptide community."
"Microwave peptide synthesis using the methods claimed in EP 1 491 552 can only be performed using CEM microwave systems which carry a license for this process," Collins continued. "No other microwave systems (including Biotage) can be offered or used to perform CEM's patented microwave peptide synthesis (including deprotection and coupling) without being in violation of this or other related CEM patents. Obviously, we will continue to ensure that all of our intellectual property rights are fully enforced and protected.
"CEM has similar issued patents in the United States, Canada, and Japan. In addition to these process patents, we have a number of issued and pending hardware and chemistry patents related to this field. We also have a major on-going Research and Development effort aimed at expanding the knowledge base and creating next generation technology for peptide synthesis.
"Our goal is to be the worldwide leader in providing unique and innovative solutions for doing peptide synthesis using our core microwave technology. We have a number of exciting new developments related to both hardware and chemistry innovation that will be coming to market in the next year," Collins concluded.