ThermoGenesis v. PharmaStem

The USPTO has announced a reexamination request of PharmaStem Therapeutics patent on technology for the “preservation of fetal and neonatal hematopoeitic stem and progenitor cells of the blood.” (U.S. Patent 5,004,681). The reexam was requested by a competitor, ThermoGenesis.

ThermoGenesis commented that it “made the request for re-examination based on our assessment that these patent claims do not distinguish over the “prior art,” including the publication of several medical journal articles describing similar techniques that predated the patents.” According to Nicholas Didier, President and CEO of PharmaStem, approximately two thirds of the cord blood banking industry operates under a PharmaStem license.

The patent at suit issued in 1991 and survived a first reexamination in 2000.