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Guidelines for Examination

 
 

4.21 "Comprising" vs. "consisting"

While in everyday language the word "comprise" may have both the meaning "include", "contain" or "comprehend" and "consist of", in drafting patent claims legal certainty normally requires it to be interpreted by the broader meaning "include", "contain" or "comprehend". On the other hand, if a claim for a chemical compound refers to it as "consisting of components A, B and C" by their proportions expressed in percentages, the presence of any additional component is excluded and therefore the percentages should add up to 100% (see T 759/91 and T 711/90).