Juno Therapeutics and the Sloan Kettering Institute for Cancer Research are currently engaged in litigation against Kite, a company which specializes in cancer immunotherapy treatments.
In a suit filed on September 1 at the United States District Court for the Central District of California, Juno and Sloan Kettering allege that Kite infringed a cancer immunotherapy that uses a chimeric T cell receptor (chimeric TCR).
The treatment is covered by US patent number 7,446,190 for the invention “Nucleic acids encoding chimeric T cell receptors”. The treatment was invented and patented by scientists at Sloan Kettering and is designed to redirect T cells to recognize and attack target cells, such as tumour cells. The treatment is licensed to Juno.
Juno alleges that Kite’s treatment, axicabtagene ciloeucel (KTE-C19), which is a drug designed to treat non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, infringed the ‘190 patent.
This is the second round of litigation between the parties — in August 2015, Kite requested an inter partes review by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) of the ‘190 patent. The PTAB found that Kite did not demonstrate “by a preponderance of the evidence” that the ‘190 patent was unpatentable.
Juno is seeking injunctive relief against Kite, along with damages and costs, as it claims that Kite is getting closer to receiving approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the commercialization of its axicabtagene ciloeucel product.
The case is currently pending.