helpful note by Shohta Ueno (an Associate with Allen & Overy's IP Litigation team in London) on the first stage of the Court of Justice's ruling in Case C-364/13 International Stem Cell Corporation v Comptroller General of Patents. This case, following a reference for a preliminary ruling from Henry Carr QC, sitting as a Deputy Judge in the Patents Court, England and Wales, seeks guidance on the following question:
Are unfertilised human ova whose division and further development have been stimulated by parthenogenesis, and which, in contrast to fertilised ova, contain only pluripotent cells and are incapable of developing into human beings, included in the term "human embryos" in Article 6(2)(c) of Directive 98/44/EC on the legal protection of biotechnological inventions?This morning the CJEU ruled that:
"... in order to be classified as a ‘human embryo’, a non-fertilised human ovum must necessarily have the inherent capacity of developing into a human being. Consequently, the mere fact that a parthenogenetically-activated human ovum commences a process of development is not sufficient for it to be regarded as a ‘human embryo’".The Curia media release is here. More Kat comments to follow ...
BREAKING NEWS: breakfast ruling on unfertilised eggs Reviewed by Jeremy on Thursday, December 18, 2014 Rating: