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26 October 2017AmericasEder Gutiérrez

Fertile ground for innovators

The biotechnology sector has repeatedly challenged patent systems around the world with moral and technical concerns, and moves at such a rate that it is difficult for patent examiners to keep up.

Many of the busiest patent offices around the world have issued examination guidelines for biotech inventions. However, despite being one of the 15 patent offices with the most applications in 2016, the Mexican Institute of Industrial Property (IMPI) has not yet implemented formal examination guidelines that would allow patent examiners to have homogeneous criteria when examining biotech applications.

Nor are there guidelines allowing patent applicants to have more certainty when deciding whether to file an application in Mexico or when facing difficulties during prosecution.

However, when the Mexican Industrial Property Law (IPL) is not clear enough by itself, it is possible to draw conclusions in light of the examiners’ usual objections during examination on which subject matter is permissible within the jurisdiction.

In Mexico, biological molecules such as proteins (eg, antibodies), DNA and RNA are patentable. The only restriction is that such biological molecules must not be biological or genetic material as found in nature.

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