WHIPgroup successfully used the Pre-Appeal program to obtain allowance on an application directed to an endoscope for illuminating a manipulating region. The invention uses optical fiber bundles to selectively illuminate different areas of the manipulating region. Distribution of proximal ends of fibers reduces local heating in the light source. The application received a Final Office Action rejecting all claims for being obvious over three references, as well as a drawing rejection for failure to disclose all claimed elements. WHIPgroup filed a Pre-Appeal brief, arguing that the examiner improperly combined the three references and failed to supply motivation to arrive at the claimed invention, and further that one skilled in the art would appreciate that no further detail is required in the drawings. A Panel was convened and the application was issued a Notice of Allowance, without the need to further limit the claims or file an Appeal Brief or Request for Continued Examination.
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