Blogs, Commentary & News

Klarquist Life Sciences Group Receives High Rankings From Juristat


Klarquist Sparkman has been ranked among the Top Firms for Life Sciences Patents by Juristat, an intellectual property consulting firm. Klarquist ranked 4th nationwide for its success in obtaining patents for Life Science clients. Only 10 US firms were recognized, each of which had at least 100 patent applications that reached a final disposition in the relevant technology centers during the one-year period following the Myriad Supreme Court decision. The Myriad and Mayo decisions have made it significantly more difficult to obtain patents on life-sciences inventions, and have made patent prosecution in the life sciences practice groups (technology center 1600) at the USPTO more challenging. Juristat’s Top Firms for Life Sciences Patents list were ranked by their average allowance rates in technology center 1600. Klarquist’s high ranking demonstrates the firm’s expertise in prosecuting life science patents during a challenging time. “Our success demonstrates Klarquist’s expertise in advising clients, understanding the technology landscape, and efficiently working with patent examiners to advance the client’s case,” said Dr. William Noonan, who heads the firm’s Life Sciences Group. Click here to view the full Juristat report.

Klarquist was the only firm based in the Pacific Northwest to be ranked on the list of Top Firms for Life Sciences Patents. Klarquist is one of the largest intellectual property law firms in the Pacific Northwest, with more than 50 attorneys and patent agents. Eleven members of the firm’s Life Sciences Group hold either M.D.’s or Ph.D.’s in a range of science and technology fields, and many have also worked in or directed research laboratories. The firm handles patent matters for research institutions, universities, and large and small corporations located in the U.S. and throughout the world. The firm’s clients include biotechnology, chemical, medical device, software companies and research laboratories, such as, Inc., Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Emory University, National Institutes of Health, University of Pittsburgh, Microsoft, GE Healthcare, Mentor Graphics, TriQuint Semiconductors, Salk Institute for Biological Studies, and Ventana Medical Systems, Inc.

For additional information please contact Dr. William D. Noonan at (503) 595-5300 or

New Patent Trial and Appeal Board Bar Association Launched


Klarquist is pleased to be a founding member of the PTAB Bar Association. The PTAB Bar Association is a collaboration of about 45 law firms that is dedicated to preserving and promoting the highest professional and ethical standards among lawyers and stakeholders who appear before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) of the United States Patent and Trademark Office. The PTAB Bar Association officially launched on September 16, 2016, five years after the America Invents Act (AIA) went into effect and four years from the date on which the first IPR petitions were filed. The Inaugural Annual Conference of the PTAB Bar Association will take place March 1 & 2, 2017 in Washington, D.C.

Klarquist has extensive experience challenging and defending patents in post-grant proceedings, and has filed numerous inter partes review and “covered business method” petitions. Klarquist also closely monitors PTAB decisions and maintains a blog on PTAB related issues. For more information on the PTAB Bar Association or its annual conference, please visit To speak with an attorney regarding Klarquist’s PTAB practice, please contact Joseph T. Jakubek or Todd M. Siegel.

U.S. Food and Drug Administration Awarded 2016 Patents for Humanity Award for Drugs and Vaccines


The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) was recently awarded the United States Patent and Trademark Office’s 2016 Patents For Humanity award for their work developing an improved meningitis vaccine production process. The patented technology has led to the MenAfriVac® vaccine, and more than 235 million people in Africa’s high-risk meningitis belt have been immunized with it since 2010. Unlike previous vaccines, the new technology created by the FDA raised the vaccine production yield from 20% to 60% and enabled the vaccine to last up to four days without refrigeration. The FDA has licensed the technology to the Meningitis Vaccine Program (MVP) and hosted production scientists from MVP’s Indian manufacturer to teach them how to use the vaccine production technology.

Only four cases of meningitis A were reported in 2013 in the immunized region covering 16 countries. In 2015, the World Health Organization recommended that MenAfriVac® be introduced in routine immunization schedules in sub-Saharan Africa. This will ensure that infants are protected against meningitis and will maintain population-wide immunity.

The Life Sciences team at Klarquist, led by William D. Noonan, M.D., works with the FDA to manage their patent portfolio. Wayne Rupert and Susan Graf, Ph.D. successfully prosecuted patent applications for the FDA’s Polysaccharide-Protein Conjugate Vaccine invention that led to the MenAfriVac® vaccine.

Klarquist Celebrates 75th Anniversary


Klarquist is proud to celebrate its 75th anniversary today. Our firm was founded by solo practitioner, Elmer A. Buckhorn, who logged the firm’s first patent matter on August 26, 1941. By 1947, business had increased enough that a second partner, Orme Cheatham, joined the firm, and by the end of the 1950s the firm had five partners, including Kenneth Klarquist and Joseph Sparkman, for whom the firm is currently named.

Today, the firm includes a combination of more than fifty attorneys and patent agents having a broad range of technical expertise and legal experience in all facets of intellectual property acquisition, licensing, and litigation. Klarquist’s professional staff of attorneys and patent agents hail from diverse backgrounds and are distinguished by the deep technical knowledge they bring to each of the firm’s practice and technology areas. Many of our professionals hold advanced degrees and bring industry experience to their work from the private and public sectors.

Klarquist represents a broad range of clients, from solo inventors to mid-size companies to some of the largest, most prestigious companies in the world. Some clients have been with our firm for more than half a century. Our current clients include Amazon, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, General Electric Company, Los Alamos National Security, Mentor Graphics, Microsoft, National Institutes of Health, Nautilus, Nikon, Oregon Health & Science University, Oregon State University, Taylor Made Golf Company, Turner Broadcasting Systems, Inc., University of Arizona, University of Oregon, University of Pittsburgh, and Ventana Medical Systems, Inc.

From the beginning, our firm has sought to always act with candor and integrity, valuing client success and relationships above any short-term gains. The firm always seeks to creatively apply technical knowledge and legal expertise to meet each client’s IP needs. These values are still carried on today, and we believe this is what largely attributes to our success over the years. Klarquist is proud of its long history, and we’re looking ahead to our next 75 years as a leading intellectual property law firm – serving our national and international clients in intellectual property matters as diverse as the human imagination.

Klarquist Attorneys Included in the 2017 Best Lawyers in America® List


Klarquist is proud to have six attorneys named to the 2017 Best Lawyers in America® list: Lisa M. Caldwell in the area of Trademark Law; James E. Geringer in the areas of IP Litigation, Patent Litigation, and Trademark Law; Ramon A. Klitzke II in the areas of Patent Law and Trademark Law; William D. Noonan, M.D. in the area of Patent Law; Stacey C. Slater in the area of Patent Law; and John D. Vandenberg in the areas of IP Litigation and Patent Litigation. In addition, Mr. Klitzke was recognized as the Patent Law “Lawyer of the Year” in Portland, OR.

Best Lawyers® compiles its lists of attorneys by conducting peer-review surveys in which thousands of leading lawyers confidentially evaluate their professional peers. Only a single lawyer in each practice area and in each community surveyed is selected as a Lawyer of the Year. The Best Lawyers in America® can be found online at


Klarquist attorney publishes an article discussing the current state of “Plain Meaning” Patent Claim Construction


Below is a link to an article written by Klarquist’s John Vandenberg concerning current issues in patent claim construction. In the article, titled “We Need Another Phillips To Explain ‘Plain Meaning’ Patent Claim Construction,” John covers four questions about “plain meaning” construction on which the Federal Circuit is divided or the Federal Circuit appears to have diverged from the Supreme Court.

The article was also published by Law360 on August 3, 2016 (Law360 subscribers can access the article here).

Plain Meaning Patent Claim Construction


Klarquist Attorneys Named to the 2016 Oregon Super Lawyers® List


Klarquist is proud to have Ramon A. Klitzke II, Jeffrey S. Love, and John D. Vandenberg named to the 2016 Oregon Super Lawyers® list, and Carla Todenhagen selected for inclusion on the 2016 Oregon Rising Stars℠ list.

The annual survey is published by Thomas Reuters. Surveys of attorneys throughout the country as well as in depth research and peer reviews are used to complete the selection process. Super Lawyers can be found online at


Klarquist Ranks Among Top Firms in 2016 BTI Power Rankings


Klarquist has been recognized in the BTI Power Rankings 2016 as one of the law firms having the strongest relationships with their clients. The list, published by BTI Consulting Group, ranks more than 500 law firms in 16 industries based on the strength of their client relationships. Klarquist was named a “Clientopia Leader” for being one of the firms clients most often named as their core, go-to firm, as well as a firm that clients most recommend to peers.

BTI’s research is based solely on in-depth interviews with General Counsel, Chief Audit Officers, Chief Financial Officers, and other C-level executives and buyers of professional services. This comprehensive analysis of client relationships trends data from more than 4,000 corporate counsel client interviews conducted over the span of 16 years, including 322 interviews in 2015. BTI’s research is independent and unbiased, which means no law firm or organization other than BTI sponsors this study.


Klarquist Client ETAP Wins $8.42 Million Jury Verdict For Competitor’s False Advertising


In a significant Lanham Act false advertising verdict, a jury in the Central District of California found CYME (a division of Eaton Corporation, represented by Jones Day) liable for making false claims about the performance of ETAP’s software. The jury awarded Klarquist’s client, ETAP, $8.42 million in damages, and found that CYME willfully engaged in false advertising.

After a five-day jury trial before Judge Selna, on June 21, 2016, the jury deliberated for under four hours and found CYME liable for false advertising under Section 43(a) of the Lanham Act and that CYME acted willfully.

ETAP has been the victim of a three-year, worldwide smear campaign that started in June 2013. The campaign consisted of YouTube videos and emails distributed throughout the power system software industry. ETAP filed suit in June 2014, won summary judgment in March 2016 that the accused statements were literally false, and got a verdict that CYME is directly liable and responsible for the actions of its Middle East representative.

The Klarquist team was led by Kristin Cleveland, Salumeh Loesch, Klaus Hamm, and John Vandenberg.


Klarquist Attorneys Receive IAM Patent 1000 Ranking


Klarquist received top national rankings in the 2016 edition of Intellectual Asset Management (IAM) magazine’s IAM Patent 1000: The World’s Leading Patent Practitioners. IAM noted that, “Klarquist Sparkman continues to dominate the local market. It also has a sterling national reputation and is one of the few firms tasked by the US administration with protecting inventions cooked up in government medical research laboratories.”

Four Klarquist attorneys, Scott E. Davis, Jeffrey S. Love, William D. Noonan, M.D., and John D. Vandenberg, also received individual recognition. Additionally, Mr. Vandenberg was the only individual in Oregon recognized as “Highly Recommended” by the publication.

The IAM Patent 1000 includes top patent firms and professionals in key jurisdictions around the globe. The rankings are culled from extensive interviews and are based on depth of expertise, market presence, and the level of work on which attorneys are typically engaged.