Medical Diagnostics Patent Eligibility Still Unsettled

Written July 8, 2019

A split US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, on July 3, 2019, refused to revisit their February decision to invalidate a patent licensed to Quest Diagnostics Inc.’s Athena unit for a way to diagnose a severe neurological disorder. Athena Diagnostics Inc. v. Mayo Collaborative Services, Fed. Cir., No. 17-2508, 7/3/19.

A three-judge panel in February followed Supreme Court precedent when it found the diagnostic methods at issue unpatentable. The Court went on to acknowledge the current cloudiness regarding the patent eligibility of diagnostic methods, but explained that clarification would have to come from the Supreme Court or Congress.