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Author: Cambria Alpha-Cobb

Brew-HaHa Over Craft Beer Trademarks

As of June 2014, the American brewing industry hit a big milestone with more than 3,000 operating US breweries. This recent expansion not only signifies an increase in locally brewed delicacies, but it also means that brewers will find it increasingly difficult to differentiate their brew from that of their fellow brewmasters. In order to stand out in this sea of bottles, brewers often use clever names for their brews. However, be it a “hopcentric” pun or a “barley-legal” nickname, it is increasingly difficult to find a clever name for a new brew while avoiding a legal trademark battle.

Hartford’s own City Steam Brewery recently settled a trademark battle over the branding on its bottled beer. Anchor Brewing Co., based in California, filed suit against City Steam, in a case that ultimately led to a seemingly minute settlement agreement. City Steam will now market its beer under the one-word “CitySteam” name instead of the original “City Steam.” Another local, New England Brewing Company recently received a petition from an attorney in India over their highly popular brew, “Gandhi Bot”, claiming that this vegetarian, aromatic India Pale Ale, is “nothing but an insult to the Indian constitution!”

Biologics UPDATE: First Biosimilar Drug Receives FDA Approval

The FDA just approved the first biosimilar drug, breaking the way for a new industry of drugs that could change the forecast of drug spending in the USA. In the simplest definitions, a biosimilar is comparable to the generic form or a copy of a biological drug. They differ from the reference drug in that they could contain differences in materials or methods of manufacture. They are meant to replicate or copy the reference biologic but because they tend to be much larger and highly complicated, than common small molecule drugs, these differences only make them highly similar, not identical, hence “bio-similar”.

$2.6 Billion Per Drug: Is Your Patent Portfolio Strong Enough to Protect Your Investment?

As the cost of bringing a new drug to market soars, it is becoming ever more important for drug developers to ensure that their development efforts are adequately protected. Even though the FDA awards up to five years of regulatory exclusivity upon approval of a new drug compound (twelve years for a biologic), this period is often far too short for a drug innovator to recoup their development costs. Therefore, it is essential that drug developers construct a well thought out patent strategy. This strategy should fully consider managing the product life cycle for a new drug from the earliest development efforts through to the mature stages of marketing when the drug is facing competition from generic manufactures.

Hot Spots of Patent Activity – Website Visually Maps Issued US Patents

The Map Room, a branch of the innovative site Way Better Patents™ recently presented an interesting “down to earth” look at innovation: heat maps of the topology of invention across the geography of the United States. Invention activity is presented at the national, state level, and county level, providing a view of the number of patents issued in 2015. Data is also provided on a weekly basis. Additionally, the data is also broken out by individual inventors versus companies, universities, and entities for the time periods.