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MMRGlobal Files Additional Cancer Fighting Patent in China Under Expedited Patent Allowance Program

20-Aug-2013 | Source : AG-IP News | Visits : 7830
LOS ANGELES, CA - MMRGlobal Inc. announced in a press release that as a result of China's participation in the Patent Prosecution Highway Program and the issuance of patents to MMR for its anti-CD20 monoclonal antibodies in the US, the Company has received confirmation from China of the filing on August 15, 2013 of a divisional Chinese patent application, No. 200780051557.6 entitled "Antibodies and Methods For Making and Using Them." 

The filing is part of MMRGlobal's plan to expand the scope of its biotech assets and other Intellectual Property, in particular, the Company's issued US Patent No. 8,465,741 directed at its anti-CD20 antibody assets, which has also been granted in Mexico and allowed in Australia. The filing occurred a week prior to the BioProcess International™ Conference and Exhibition in Shanghai, China, scheduled to be held August 20-21, where Dr. Yajun Guo, formerly a professor at the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center in San Diego, will be a featured keynote speaker. Dr. Guo participated in research and development of the antibodies for Sidney Kimmel and Favrille, Inc., a San Diego-based biotechnology company MMR acquired through a reverse merger in January 2009. The patented anti-CD20 antibodies and associated research materials were maintained on behalf of Favrille for a significant period of time at Sidney Kimmel until they were moved to MMR.

MMRGlobal CEO Robert H. Lorsch met with Dr. Guo in China where the two discussed the ownership of MMR's biotech IP, possible strategic opportunities, and Dr. Guo's efforts to use the Company's anti-CD20 antibodies to develop low-cost alternatives for treatments like Rituxan® in connection with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and other cancers widely considered too expensive for China's 400 million middle-class patients who pay out of pocket. The Company's divisional patent application in China will allow it to take advantage of an international treaty to expedite receiving a Notice of Allowance of a patent in China based on the existing approval in the US.

The anti-CD20 antibodies were part of MMR's pre-merger portfolio of biotech assets and other intellectual property owned by Favrille, originally spun off from the Sidney Kimmel. As previously announced, Mexico (and thereafter the US) granted the first patents for the Company's anti-CD20 monoclonal antibody assets under the title "Antibodies and Methods for Making and Using Them." The issuance of US Patent No. 8,465,741 on June 18, 2013 provided the Company with a mechanism to request expedited examination of the equivalent patent claims in various international countries. The filing of the new divisional patent application in China seeks to take advantage of this expedited process.

These patents and patent application will provide additional protection of the Company's specific antibodies that have particular utility in fighting cancers. Additional patent applications for the Company's antibodies are also pending in a number of other countries including Brazil, Canada, Hong Kong, India, Europe, Japan and Korea. MMR's anti-CD20 monoclonal antibodies are considered extremely important assets of the Company, the value and benefit of which are demonstrated by how these antibodies are used commercially in products like Rituxan®, an anti-CD20 monoclonal antibody which is due to go off patent in 2015.

Prior to the Company's reverse merger in 2009, Favrille had invested more than $100 million in research and development on its FavId™ vaccine trials and use of customized tumor cells to treat lymphoma patients and other technologies. MMR has continued to make progress in protecting the Company's IP, including its anti-CD20 antibodies and B-Cell vaccine patents entitled "Method and Composition for Altering a B-Cell Mediated Pathology," which relate to methods of manufacturing compositions for B-Cell vaccines used in the fight against lymphoma and potentially other forms of cancer.

Although MMRGlobal will continue working to license and otherwise exploit an extensive portfolio of biotech assets, including its anti-CD20 monoclonal antibodies, and additionally, data from vaccine trials, thousands of patient tumor samples and other intellectual property including numerous worldwide patents in various stages, it remains focused on its primary health IT business. The Company has numerous patents issued or pending related to providing online medical and Personal Health Records in more than 12 countries of commercial interest and has hundreds of additional claims either pending or published related to health information technology in the US and other parts of the world.

MMRGlobal Inc., through its wholly-owned operating subsidiary, MyMedicalRecords, Inc., provides secure and easy-to-use online Personal Health Records ("PHRs") and electronic safe deposit box storage solutions, serving consumers, healthcare professionals, employers, insurance companies, financial institutions, retail pharmacies, and professional organizations and affinity groups.
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