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DNA Phrase Too Descriptive for Registered Trademark, TTAB Says

Jan. 6, 2020, 9:59 PM

A biotech company lost its bid to register a trademark for a patented DNA technique it invented, after a Patent and Trademark tribunal said the phrase “Sequencing by Binding” was too descriptive to register.

The Jan. 6 precedential decision illustrates that multi-word trademarks, even if coined by an applicant, can still fall short of the requirements for trademark registration. The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board said Omniome Inc. failed to demonstrate that the phrase had any distinctive qualities.

Omniome had argued that it invented the technique and created a name that wasn’t used by anyone else in the field. But...

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