Marijuana Patent Applications Face Tough Road At USPTO

Law360, New York (January 8, 2015, 2:08 PM EST) -- The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has started receiving applications for patents on new types of marijuana plants, and attorneys say that the federal government's classification of the drug as illegal could make obtaining a patent difficult, though nothing in the law expressly bars patent protection for illegal substances.

The patent applications follow recent decisions by voters in Colorado and Washington to legalize the recreational use of marijuana. That appears to have emboldened marijuana entrepreneurs in those states and elsewhere to seek patent protection on strains...
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