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Alexandria, VA, January 11, 2010 — Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney PC represented San Francisco-based FibroGen, Inc., in upholding a pioneering patent that covers assays for identifying small molecule inhibitors of Hypoxia Inducible Factor (HIF) prolyl hydroxylase and methods for treating HIF-related disorders using HIF technology.  This decision marks another success for Buchanan's nationally recognized interferences practice, which has handled more than 100 interference related matters and is led by Todd Walters. Christopher L. North, Ph.D. assisted Walters in this case.
The United States Patent and Trademark Office Board of Patent Appeals and Interferences handed down a decision on Monday, December 7, 2009, in the interference between U.S. Patent 6,855,510, by Kaelin and Ivan (“Kaelin”), which is assigned to Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and licensed to FibroGen, Inc., and the pending U.S. Patent Application Serial No. 10/472,595 by Maxwell et al. ("Maxwell"), which is assigned to Isis Innovation Ltd. and sublicensed to Amgen, Inc.
All of the involved claims of the Maxwell application were held unpatentable by a panel of three Administrative Patent Judges. The interference was first suggested by Maxwell in September 2005 and was formally declared by the Board in December 2007. In its recent decision, the Board entered a judgment on priority against Maxwell, stating that Maxwell provoked the interference on the basis of claims not properly supported by its application, and that Maxwell was unable to present a patentable claim. In addition, the Board granted Kaelin's motion that Maxwell's claims were unpatentable for lack of written description and lack of enablement.  Amgen, Inc. was represented by Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett & Dunner, LLP.
This decision comes on the heels of other recent successful decisions obtained by Buchanan’s patent interference practice team which include Board decisions, reversal of an adverse decision by a district court and dismissal of a Federal Circuit appeal.  
About FibroGen, Inc.

FibroGen is a research-based biotechnology company using its expertise in connective tissue growth factor (CTGF) and hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF) biology to discover, develop, and commercialize novel therapeutics for serious unmet medical needs.