June 6, 2011 - The U.S. Supreme Court rejected Stanford University's attempt to revive its lawsuit against Roche Holding.
The litigation centered on who owned patents developed by a Stanford researcher - Mark Holodniy - who had signed agreements with both Stanford and a company called Cetus that was later acquired by Roche. Stanford had sought to invalidate Holodniy's patent agreement with Cetus/Roche.
The background of this complicated case was detailed in our Wealth of Ideas newsletter as one of our "Precedent-Setting Patent Cases to Follow in 2011."
In its 7-2 ruling, the Court held that Stanford's claims of patent ownership were too broad under the 1980 Bayh-Dole Act, a federal law that governs how patent rights are distributed - among the government, investors and universities - when intellectual property is a result of federally-funded research.
The Court's decision means that Stanford and Roche must share the rights to the patents in suit.