Antibody specification beyond the target: claiming a later-generation therapeutic antibody by its target epitope

  • An Erratum to this article was published on 07 December 2012

It may be possible to patent both antibodies to new targets and later-developed antibodies to known targets.

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  • 07 December 2012

    In the version of this article initially published, in Table 1 “Patents claiming anti-TNFα antibodies”, patent US 7012135 should have been assigned to UCB Pharma and not UC Berkeley. The error has been corrected in the PDF and HTML versions of this article.


  1. 1

    Centocor Ortho Biotech, Inc. v. Abbott Laboratories, 636 F.3d 1341 (Fed. Cir. 2011).

  2. 2

    Id. p. 1348.

  3. 3

    Id. pp. 1349–1350.

  4. 4

    Id. p. 1353.

  5. 5

    US District Court for the Southern District of California; 10-CV-00608 BEN (GS), 18 October 2011 (claim construction order dkt. no. 60).

  6. 6

    Id. p. 6.

  7. 7

    Id. p. 14.

  8. 8

    Noelle v. Lederman, 355 F.3d 1343 (Fed. Cir. 2004); 2004 US App. LEXIS 774.

  9. 9

    European Patent Office Technical Board decision T0542/95, 1999, European Patent Office Board of Appeal decisions database no. T0542/95.

  10. 10

    Storz, U. IP issues of therapeutic antibodies. in SpringerBriefs in Biotech Patents 2012 (ed. Storz, U.) 1–12 (Springer, 2012).

  11. 11

    See, for example, Abbott Biotechnology Ltd. v. Centocor Ortho Biotech Inc., 09cv40089, US District Court for the District of Massachusetts (Worcester); Abbott Labs. v. Bayer Healthcare, LLC, case no. 09-40002-FDS (D. Mass. 25 October 2010); and Bayer Healthcare, LLC v. Centocor Ortho Biotech, Inc., case no. 4:09-cv-11362-FDS (D. Mass. 23 December 2010).

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The discussion above reflects solely the personal views and considerations of the authors and does not constitute either legal advice or the views of either Michalski · Hüttermann & Partner Patent Attorneys or Perkins Coie LLP. Thus, neither the authors nor Michalski · Hüttermann & Partner Patent Attorneys and Perkins Coie LLP can be bound either philosophically or as representatives of their various past, present and future clients to the comments and views expressed herein. Although every attempt has been made to ensure that the statements herein are accurate, errors or omissions may be present for which we disclaim any liability.

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Correspondence to Colin G Sandercock or Ulrich Storz.

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Sandercock, C., Storz, U. Antibody specification beyond the target: claiming a later-generation therapeutic antibody by its target epitope. Nat Biotechnol 30, 615–618 (2012).

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