The Akkermansia Company Found to be ‘First to File’ Patent Application to Treat Obesity Through Oral Use of the Probiotic Akkermansia

Decision Rendered by Patent Trial and Appeal Board of USPTO as Company Launches New Probiotic Supplement in U.S. Health Care Channel

MONT-SAINT-GUIBERT, Belgium, Dec. 05, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Akkermansia Company, a pioneer in developing “next generation” probiotics and postbiotics, announced today that the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (Board) of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has issued a decision in a patent interference involving the probiotic Akkermansia.

In that decision, the Board found that the inventors of applications licensed to The Akkermansia Company — Cani et al. — were the first to file a patent application related to treating a metabolic disorder such as obesity with the oral administration of Akkermansia, before Kaplan et al., the inventors of applications licensed to Pendulum Therapeutics, Inc.

The Akkermansia Company distributes supplements in Europe and has started the process of introducing its first product, a postbiotic supplement made with pasteurized Akkermansia, into the U.S. health care channel.


Before making its decision, the Board evaluated the earliest patent applications filed by both parties in the case. The Board went on to find that Cani disclosed the invention in an application filed in November 2012, while Kaplan et al. did not disclose the invention in their earliest application filed in February 2012.

“The Patent Office has, in effect, stated that the Cani inventors were the first to make the invention, something we were certain of before asking Cani to request the declaration of an interference,” said Michael Oredsson, Chief Executive Officer of The Akkermansia Company. “While the upcoming second stage of the interference will allow Kaplan to present its priority case, we are confident that the decision that the Cani inventors were first will be confirmed in the final decision.”

At the start of the interference, the USPTO had named Kaplan the Senior Party in the matter. However, the new decision reverses that, making Cani the Senior Party and Kaplan the Junior Party. “As the Senior Party, Cani will win the interference unless Kaplan can show that they made the invention, a method of treating a metabolic disorder with the oral administration of Akkermansia, before Cani,” said Oredsson.

The USPTO also decided that Cani had made the invention at least as early as March of 2012.

The USPTO has set a schedule that requires Kaplan to present evidence of prior invention by January 12, 2024. Cani presented its evidence of prior invention during the first stage of the interference. If the interference is decided in the typical timeframe, a final decision would be issued before the end of 2024.

In Fall 2023, The Akkermansia Company began rolling out its dietary supplement product, Healthy Weight with Glucose Control, in the U.S. through Metagenics, which provides nutritional products and supplements through health care practitioners. The product contains pasteurized Akkermansia muciniphila, which was first isolated in 2004, to support healthy weight and glucose metabolism.

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About The Akkermansia Company
An international leader in developing “next generation” probiotic and postbiotic supplements, The Akkermansia Company is on a mission to shift the focus of the microbiome health paradigm from symptoms to root cause. Founded in 2016 by Profs. Patrice Cani and Willem M de Vos (inventors on the Cani et al. application), the company discovered, named, patented, and developed Akkermansia, which plays a major role in helping to maintain a healthy gut microbiome. The supplements are available in Europe and are now rolling out through health care practitioners in the U.S. Learn more at

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at


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