Friday, June 15, 2007

What californiastemcellreport isn't talking about

Following up on a post on californiastemcellreport, and a comment on an IPBiz post, on the issues of patents on embryonic stem cells and the Cha duplicate publication matter, IPBiz further observes

#1. The bigger issue in California is that there probably will NOT be patent royalties in the next ten years from patents arising from treatments derived from therapeutic cloning (ie, the SCNT work falsely claimed by Hwang and now not claimed by anyone).

#2. Whether or not there were royalties coming, California researchers could do research on therapeutic cloning/embryonic stem cells without paying patent royalties to WARF because of the research exemption of 35 USC 271(e)(1), as further articulated in Merck v. Integra. The idea that WARF could (or even would) block research by academics is a silly, make-weight argument designed to scare people. LBE's primary opposition to what californiastemcellreport and FTCR are saying originates in the basic falsity of the presumption that WARF's patents would block academic research.
From that point, one gets into various strange revisions of past history, like the allegation that aviation patent pool in World War I allowed the building of American fighter planes in World War I. No American-built fighter planes were ever used in World War I, but the patent pool did allow special, more highly financed, interests to profit at the expense of smaller guys. The unbiased, outside observer has to keep an eye on the ball here, whether talking about what happened during World War I or what is happening in the present.

#3. Neither californiastemcellreport nor FTCR want to discuss the Loring patent applications. These had patent claims to embryonic stem cells broader than those of WARF / Thomson. One might have a different viewpoint on this argument if one understood that California researchers were trying to tie down stem cells with patents. This is NOT an argument about open research vs. patents; it is an argument about "which" patents. But, of course, californiastemcellreport and FTCR do NOT want that fact known. The San Diego Union Tribune ran a story about Bongso, emphasizing that Bongso published but didn't patent, but didn't tell you that Loring, quoted in that very story, tried to patent. The Union Tribune neglected to mention that Thomson's '780 patent cited to Bongso's work, and distinguished that work from Thomson's work. When LBE contacted the Union Tribune and Somers on these points, no response was made.

#4. Although there was some interest in the Cha "duplicate publication" matter back in February 2007, a possible defamation lawsuit has dampened the enthusiasm of the Los Angeles Times and the journal Fertility & Sterility. It would have been easy for the Los Angeles Times to pull the author instructions for F&S off the internet to illustrate the journal's position on duplicate publication as plagiarism, but the Los Angeles Times didn't bother. The issues on the "duplicate publication" matter at F&S and the questionable publication in JRM are going to be allowed to slide as California gives money to Cha's RMI to do, of all things, what Hwang Woo Suk falsely claimed to have done in two, now-retracted, articles in the journal Science, human SCNT. If it weren't so sad, it would be funny.

But it doesn't appear one will read about it in californiastemcellreport.

Getting back to the post on californiastemcellreport upon which LBE made comment , note that there was NOT criticism of the discussion about what the National Academy of Sciences did. There was criticism as to what the californiastemcellreport is NOT talking about. As noted many times on IPBiz, it's sometimes what you DON'T say that is most important. Even with the comment by Jensen on IPBiz, that problem remains.


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