WIPO ST.26 – new standard for sequence listings in patent applications

The new WIPO standard and the corresponding PCT rule changes will enter into force on 1 July 2022.

If a national or international patent application filed with the PRH contains biosequences, the description part must contain a sequence listing. From 1 July 2022, the sequence listing must be prepared using XML (eXtensible Markup Language) in compliance with the new standard ST.26. The new standard will replace the previous standard ST.25.

World Intellectual Property Organization WIPO has developed a WIPO Sequence software tool in co-operation with the patent authorities. The tool enables applicants to prepare sequence listings compliant with ST.26. You can download the software tool on the WIPO website. Read more and download the WIPO Sequence software tool on the WIPO website.

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After the new standard has come into effect, we will examine the sequence listings as a part of the formal examination of the patent application. If we notice any issues in the sequence listing, we will contact the applicant.

Changes to section 11 in the Patent Regulations

Section 11 in the Patent Regulations is changed correspondingly. Section 11 from 1 July 2022:

“If the application includes a sequence of at least ten consecutive, specifically defined nucleotides or a sequence containing at least four consecutive, specifically defined amino acids, the description part must contain a sequence listing of these, drafted in compliance with WIPO standard ST.26. The sequence listing must be submitted as required by standard ST.26.

If the description part also contains a sequence listing in some other form, it must conform to a sequence listing compliant with ST.26.”

More information about the new standard:

"WIPO Standard ST.26" (pdf) on the WIPO website.

Notice from the European Patent Office dated 9 December 2021 concerning sequence listings on the EPO website. 

For more information, please contact
Jani Päiväsaari
Head of Division
Tel. +358 29 509 5842
Email: firstname.lastname@prh.fi

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Latest update 16.06.2022