Here is a report on recent news and commentary related to the Federal Circuit and its cases. Today’s report highlights:

  • an article about the “plunge by nearly one-fifth” of patent related filings in Texas federal courts;
  • another article about whether the Federal Circuit considers research tools to be covered by safe harbor provisions in the Hatch Waxman Act; and
  • a blog post about personal jurisdiction in patent infringement cases.

Christopher Yasiejko and Samantha Handler co-authored an article for Bloomberg Law addressing the “plunge by nearly one-fifth” of patent related filings in Texas federal courts. Yasiejko and Handler noted “the drop is even sharper among the non-practicing entities known colloquially as ‘patent trolls.’” Yasiejko and Handler suggested “the District of Delaware is expected to take on the lion’s share of the filings that would’ve previously gone to Waco.”

Emma Frank published an article with BioPharm International concerning the Federal Circuit’s treatment of research tools. Frank explained that “research tools are patented inventions that are ‘used in the development of . . . regulatory submissions’” but are not subject to regulatory approval. Frank discussed how the Federal Circuit “stated that ‘research tools or devices that are not themselves subject to FDA approval may not be covered’” by the Hatch Waxman Act’s safe harbor provisions. Frank highlighted that research tools created by Allele Biotech & Pharmaceuticals and used by Pfizer to “’research, develop, and test their SARS-CoV-2 vaccine candidates’” were recently found to not be covered by the safe harbor provision.

Dennis Crouch wrote a blog post for PatentlyO discussing the recent Federal Circuit opinion in Apple v. Zipit Wireless, Inc., in which the Federal Circuit found “Zipit had sufficient ‘minimum contacts’ with the state” to establish personal jurisdiction in the Northern District of California. Crouch argued the Federal Circuit has changed its approach from finding personal jurisdiction to be “intimately involved with the substance of the patent laws” and instead “has largely brought its doctrine back in line with that of other circuits.”