1. Olaplex, L’Oréal lose Fed Circuit appeals over haircare patent

L’Oréal and Olaplex have failed to convince the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit to overturn a decision on keratin treatment patent claims. In a decision issued on January 28 the Court affirmed a Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) decision invalidating key claims of an Olaplex patent. But despite an appeal from L’Oréal, other claims of the patent remain valid. Keratin treatments are usually used to smoothe or treat frizzy hair. Olaplex and L’Oréal have been wrapped up in litigation over patents covering types of keratin treatments since early 2017. L’Oréal gained a victory as it secured the invalidation of an Olaplex patent covering keratin treatments for hair and nails. Both companies appealed against the PTAB’s decision—Olaplex wanted the invalidated claims restored, while L’Oréal argued the breakage claims should also be ruled invalid. The Federal Circuit upheld the PTAB decision on all counts. 

2. African govts aiming to ‘eradicate’ counterfeits with new platform

The African Union (AU) has unveiled plans to tackle counterfeits across the continent, with the support of the Saudi-backed Future Investment Initiative (FII). The plan will apply across the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), a 54-country agreement brokered by the AU which came into effect in 2019. The partnership has been described by the AU as an “historic effort and opportunity”, it will employ the services of Swiss firm OriginAll, which operates a platform for tracing the authenticity of goods. According to the AU, OriginAll’s African team will provide a “single window” for businesses, governments, and consumers to verify the authenticity of any product sold within the AfCFTA.

3. Xiaomi Patents Smart Glass With Detection and Therapeutic Properties

The Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi has reportedly patented a smart glass that has the capability to integrate detection and treatment. The patent also suggests that it would emit therapeutic signals which include phototherapy signals and sound wave signals that can be used to treat brain diseases or eye fatigue. The report states that the magnetic or electromagnetic waves that are emitted can promote the absorption of missing elements in the brain and promote better blood circulation. The patent contains seven foldable smartphone designs out of which three models feature clamshell form factor. 

4. NIT – Warangal Secures International Patents

Professor Rao said that the department of Mechanical Engineering and his team were granted a U.S. patent for their invention titled “Ultrasonic waveguide technique  for distributed sensing and measurements of physical and chemical properties of surrounding media.” Further, Dr. P Suresh, Department of Mechanical Engineering and his team were granted a U.S. patent for an invention titled. “Waveguide Technique for the Simultaneous Measurement of Temperature Dependent Properties of Materials.” In addition to this, Professor A Venu Gopal and his Mtech student Joby Yeldo were granted an Indian Patent for an invention entitled “Hovomarine.” 

5. Shivaji University researchers get patent for anti-breast cancer drug

Academicians at the Shivaji University, Kolhapur recently received a patent for the chemical complex (molecule) drug that was synthesised in the university laboratory. The molecule that showed anti-breast cancer properties was synthesised over a period of 3 months by Prakash Bansode, who is an assistant professor at the university under the guidance of Prof. Gajanan Rashinkar. The molecule is said to have a ferrocene compound that shows anti-cancer properties. However, most of the time, it kills not just the cancer cells but also normal cells during chemotherapy. As many as 10 derivatives of the compound were synthesised and tested at various levels. 

6. Microsoft has patented a chatbot that could imitate a deceased loved one, celebrity, or fictional character 

Microsoft has issued a new patent for a chatbot that could take on another personality and likeness. As per the documents from USPTO, the chat bot would be created using the information that could be gathered from their social media presence such as images, behavioural information, social media posts, and even text messages. The documents show plans for two and three dimensional recreations hinting a physical presence of the person. While Microsoft’s patent does not specifically say that the product would be used to bring deceased people back to life digitally, it shows how a chatbot could be implemented to recreate or imitate individuals from the real world.

7. Tata to build military aircraft in India as it acquires IP rights


For the first time ever, the Tata group will be developing and manufacturing a military aircraft in India. Hence, they have acquired the intellectual property rights for a German origin platform. For the first time ever, an indian private entity is looking to make a fully military grade aircraft. Until now, it was under the domain of the state owned Hindustan aeronautics (HAL).

8. Xi Jinping calls for intellectual property protection to stimulate innovation

An article strengthening intellectual property protection and improving the vitality of innovation while adopting new patterns of development will be published in the third issue of the Qiushi Journal by Chinese President Xi Jinping. The article will point out the progress made in the field of intellectual property with the improvement of the legal system also keeping track of the shortcomings. China is changing from an importer of intellectual property to an inventor of it according to the article. The article also calls on the officials to keep an eye on intellectual property protection to promote it to work on a higher level.

Image Sources:

  1. L’Oréal on Wikimedia
  2. African Union on Wikimedia
  3. Kashmiri on Wikimedia
  4. Kumar.kisalaya on Wikimedia
  5. National Cancer Institute on Unsplash.
  6. BENCE BOROS on Unsplash
  7. Tata group on Wikimedia
  8.  U.S. Department of State from United States On Wikimedia