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Ono Pharmaceutical Co. Limited v. Pfizer Inc., Interlocutory Judge District Court The Hague, 27 February 2018, Case no. ECLI:NL:RBDHA:2018:2284

Ono filed a European patent application EP ‘517 A1 entitled: ‘Immunopotentiating compositions comprising anti-PD-L1 antibodies’. After the rejection of Pfizer’s third party observations at the EPO, Pfizer lodged proceedings at the German Verwaltungsgericht in Munich claiming the co-ownership of EP ‘517 A1. The EPO subsequently stays the proceedings before grant.

Ono now requests that the Interlocutory Judge of the District Court of The Hague orders Pfizer to communicate to the EPO that the proceedings to grant should be resumed and to withdraw the proceedings in Munich. The Judge states it has no jurisdiction to hear these claims. The damages that Ono claims to incur in the Netherlands by not being able to enforce it’s patent are too remote from the specific claims in the current proceedings. Moreover, Ono’s claims relate solely to actions that should be taken abroad.

Regarding costs, the Judge ruled that the enforcement directive is not applicable as the connection between these proceedings and the intended enforcement of the patent after grant by Ono is too remote.

A copy of the decision can be read here.