1. Third Party Observations under article 115 of EPC
TKDL third party submission under Article 115 EPC brought to the notice of examination division the prior art references on the use of Rubus fructicosus, Vitis vinifera (wine grape), Morus nigra (Black mulberry), Prunus avium (sweet cherry) and Ficus carica (common fig) for the treatment of premature grey hair and as hair blackener, colouring agent for hair, causing redness of hair, beneficial for hair from the book – Muheet-e-Azam Vol. III by Mohammad Azam Khan (Unani, Exhibit 01); Khazaain-al-Advia, Vol III by Mohammad Najmul Ghani Khan (Unani, Exhibit 02); Kitaab-al-Haawi-fil-Tibb, Vol.XX by Abu Bakr Mohammad.Bin Zakariyya Al-Razi (Unani, Exhibit 03); Al-Jaam'e-li-Mufradaat-al-Advia-wal-Aghzia, Vol. I by Ziya Al- Din Abdullah Ibn Al- Baitar (Unani, Exhibit 04); Kaamil-al-Sena'ah, Part II by Ali Ibn-e-Abbaas Majoosi (Unani, Exhibit 05); Kitaab-al-'Umdah-fil-Jeraahat, Part II by Aminuddaulah Abul Farj Ibn Al-Quff Maseehi (Unani, Exhibit 06); Bharata Bhaisajya Ratnakara (Ayurveda, Exhibit 07) and Gadanigrahah by Sodhala (Ayurveda, Exhibit 08).
2. Relevant Extract of EPO Examination report
EPO Patent Examiner(s) took cognizance of TKDL references. Extract of examination report at Para 1, 3 & 4 are reproduced below:
The following documents have been submitted by a third party
The numbering will be adhered to in the rest of the procedure.
D14: Formulation ID: JA7/418A
D15: Formulation ID: JA6/146A
D16: Formulation ID: AA20/226G
D17: Formulation ID: WA1/254F
D18: Formulation ID: AH3/711B
D19: Formulation ID: RS/840
D20: Formulation ID: RS/992
A third party observation has been filed. As evident from the documents cited in the third party observation (D14-D20) it is common practice to use anthocyanins for dyeing hair. The dyeing compositions described in the documents cited by the third party seem to contain water or alcohol. Arbitrarily using/replacing commonly used solvents such as water, ethanol or glycerol comes within the customary practice of the skilled person. Moreover, the compositions cited by the third party observation also seem to have a pH close to neutral due to the use of milk, rain water, etc. as the solvent.
Thus, the pH requirement defined in present claim 1 seems to be fulfilled (Guidelines Chapter G, VI, 6).
The compositions disclosed in the third party observation are used for hair dyeing Since the same active hair colourants (the same fruits, thus the same anthocyanins) are used at the same conditions as proposed by present claim 1 it has to be concluded that the same type of semi-permanent hair dyeing is achieved.
Thus, the subject-matter of present claims 1-10 lacks novelty over the citations of the third party observation.
Present claim 1 cannot be distinguished from the teaching of D4 (examples 2 and 3) or D14-D20. Moreover, documents D4 and D14-D20 identify fruit extracts as potential coloring agents.
Thus, starting from any of documents D4 or D14-D20 the objective technical problem can possibly only be regarded as to provide a mere alternative.”
Full examination report can be referred at EP2477597.pdf
3. Outcomes of Third Party Observations & Examination Report
As the outcome of TKDL third party and other documents cited in examination report the examination of application is under process and reply from the Applicant M/s University Of Leeds/ Great Britain is still awaited.