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Organik Kimya AS v. Rohm & Haas Co.

Grammatical Uncertainty in Specification Did Not Require Expansive View of “Broadest Reasonable Interpretation”

Organik Kimya AS v. Rohm & Haas Co., 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 19826 (Fed. Cir. Oct. 11, 2017) (Prost, NEWMAN, Taranto) (PTAB) (2 of 5 stars)

Fed Cir affirms IPR decisions confirming patentability as to two Rohm patents.

As to the first patent, The Board did not err in its determination of the broadest reasonable interpretation of a claim term. The opinion discusses the record, and rejects Organik’s argument that definitional language in the specification was grammatically ambiguous. Organik had argued that the Board erred in resolving the ambiguity with the narrower of two possible approaches. The language in question—“[s]uitable swelling agents include, are those which, [have a certain characteristic]—was not actually ambiguous, and meant that the suitable swelling agents were those having the characteristic in question. Applying that construction, the record established neither anticipation nor obviousness.

As to the second patent, the same reasoning and outcome applies.

KEYWORDS: BROADEST REASONABLE INTERPRETATION; INTER PARTES REVIEW; ANTICIPATION (NO); OBVIOUSNESS (NO)