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Trademark Infringement And Product-By-Process Patent

Subject Matter Product: Ferric Carboxymaltose (FCM):
FCM is a patented product formulated to meet the requirements of an intravenous iron therapy. It is designed to be non-toxic, easily administrable in various clinical conditions, and capable of quick sterilization.

The patent for FCM was filed to protect its unique formulation and properties, making it suitable for medical use.

Nature of the Patent Claim:
The appellant/plaintiff claimed that their patent, identified as IN�536, was principally a product claim or a product-by-process claim.

A product-by-process claim refers to a type of patent claim where the product is defined by the process used to create it. In this case, the patented product is defined by the specific manufacturing process outlined in the patent.

Legal Proceedings:
  • The appellant/plaintiff filed a suit (CS Comm No. 261 of 2022) against MSN Laboratories Limited concerning their patented product.
  • The appellant/plaintiff sought an interim injunction to prevent MSN Laboratories Limited from using a different process to manufacture a product similar to FCM.
However, the Hon'ble Single Judge dismissed the interim injunction application, stating that the patent protection secured by the plaintiff was limited to the process by which the product is obtained, not the product itself.

Appeal to the Division Bench:
The appellant/plaintiff appealed the decision to the Division Bench, arguing that the patent was a product-by-process claim and should not be limited by the specific manufacturing process outlined in the patent.

The Division Bench, after reviewing the arguments and evidence, allowed the appeal. They observed that if the product manufactured by MSN Laboratories Limited was indeed FCM, the adoption of a slightly different manufacturing process would not be relevant.

Essentially, the Division Bench ruled that if the product itself is the same, variations in the manufacturing process should not affect the scope of patent protection granted to the product.

The decision by the Division Bench clarifies the scope of patent protection for product-by-process claims. It affirms that the protection extends to the product itself, regardless of the specific method used to manufacture it.

This ruling provides greater certainty and protection for patent holders, ensuring that their patented products are safeguarded against infringement even if competitors use slightly different manufacturing processes.

It also underscores the importance of understanding the nuances of patent claims and how they affect the scope of protection granted to patented inventions.

In summary, the Division Bench's decision provides clarity on the interpretation of product-by-process claims and reinforces the principle that patent protection extends to the product itself, irrespective of variations in the manufacturing process.

Case Title: Vifor International Ltd. Vs MSN Laboratories Pvt. Ltd.
Order Date: 07.02.2024
Case No. FAO(OS) (COMM) 159/2023
Name of Court: Delhi High Court
Neutral Citation:2024:DHC:878:DB
Name of Hon'ble Judge: Yahswant Varma and Dharmesh Sharma H.J.


Ideas, thoughts, views, information, discussions and interpretation expressed herein are being shared in the public Interest. Readers' discretion is advised as these are subject to my subjectivity and may contain human errors in perception, interpretation and presentation of the fact and issue involved herein.

Written By: Advocate Ajay Amitabh Suman, IP Adjutor - Patent and Trademark Attorney
Email: [email protected], Ph no: 9990389539

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