Consumer Watchdog v. WI Alumni Research Found., No. 13-1377 (Fed. Cir. 2014)Annotate this Case
Consumer Watchdog describes itself as a “not-for-profit public charity dedicated to providing a voice for taxpayers and consumers in special interest-dominated public discourse, government and politics.” In 2006, Consumer Watchdog requested inter partes reexamination of the 913 patent, which is owned by WARF and is generally directed to human embryonic stem cell cultures. Consumer Watchdog did not allege any involvement in research or commercial activities involving human embryonic stem cells. Nor did it allege that it is an actual or prospective competitor of WARF or licensee of the 913 patent. Instead, Consumer Watchdog simply alleged that WARF’s “broad and aggressive assertion of the 913 patent has put a severe burden on taxpayer funded research in the State of California where [Consumer Watchdog] is located.” Consumer Watchdog claimed concern that the patent allowed WARF to completely preempt all uses of human embryonic stem cells, particularly those for scientific and medical research. The Patent Trial and Appeal Board affirmed the patentability of challenged claims. The Federal Circuit dismissed an appeal, stating that Consumer Watchdog did not establish an injury in fact sufficient to confer Article III standing.