Benitec Ltd (ASX:BLT) shares were up over by 80% this morning after the US Patent and Trademark office’s board of Patent Appeals and Interferences reversed all of their previous rejections of the “Control of Gene Expression” patent.
The biotechnology company is focused on developing therapeutics to treat auto-immune diseases, including HIV/AIDS, using its proprietary ddRNAi technology which can be used to precisely target RNA viruses.
Benitec has a strong focus on IP licensing so the ruling clears the way for Benitec to pursue new development partnerships in its gene silencing specialisation.
The company announced earlier this month that it would expand its gene silencing research and development focus beyond HIV/AIDS into hepatitis B, non-small cell lung cancer and hepatitis C.
Benitec was established in 1997 to commercialise research from Queensland’s Department of Primary Industries. It has a market capitalisation of $12M and was trading at 3.7c at 11am.