The Canadian Intellectual Property Office ("CIPO") has announced public consultations on its practices with respect to patent claims to diagnostic methods and medical uses.
CIPO's announced consultations also extend to encompass its practices with respect to inventive concept and statutory subject matter under Canada's Patent Act. Statutory subject matter was brought into new focus following the November 2011 decision of the Federal Court of Appeal (2011 FCA 328) which affirmed that business methods may be patentable subject matter, and ordered the Commissioner of Patents to re-examine the "one-click" patent application of Amazon.com Inc. on an expedited basis. On December 23, 2011 – after more than 10 years of pendency – the Commissioner allowed Amazon's Canadian Patent Application No. 2246933 for its "one-click" method.
The 30-day consultation which is now underway commenced during the week of April 2, 2012. Interested parties are presently invited to submit comments concerning CIPO's practices with respect to inventive concept and statutory subject matter under Canada's Patent Act, and with respect to patent claims for diagnostic methods and medical uses.