One main emphasis of our work lies in understanding and explaining molecule-based inventions.
The following questions continually recur within biochemistry, cell biology and medicine:
- which aspects of the invention can be protected?
- what subject matter makes a sensible business case for protection?
- when is the best time to file an application?
- how much experimental evidence for a fundamental principle needs to be documented?
- how broad can the claims for the invention be?
The answers to these questions require an understanding of the planned exploitation strategy, as well as a feeling for the expectations and needs of the licensing partners and investors. A large number of patent applications we have produced have been successfully licensed, or have served as the basis for founding new companies.
Basic research discoveries in medicine can lead to inventions with practical applications, if the knowledge acquired is related to use of known substances in prevention or treatment of ailments. Here the ruling of the European Patent Office’s Boards of Appeal on the so-called (second) medical indication has opened up a multitude of possibilities for protecting these inventions in recent years.
The area of molecular diagnostics has become significantly more complex since the recent decisions made by the highest courts in the USA. Here, in cooperation with our American colleagues, we find solutions where costs can be kept properly in balance with the likelihood of success.
Frequently asked questions in pharmaceutical chemistry include how broad claims for protection of substances, crystal forms, dosage forms and pharmaceutical formulations can be. Where necessary we carry out searches of commercial databases, such as Registry and Marpat, to derive substances related to discovered active agents. We have extensive experience in protecting inventions in the area of antibodies and cell therapy.
Protection of synthesis strategies is one of our main emphases in our work in classical chemistry. We work for developers of new methods for manufacturing “active pharmaceutical ingredients” (API) to identify the intellectual property rights held by competitors, and advise on how to proceed in each context.
In materials science it is often important to find the best possible protection for newly developed materials. The focus here is not only the material itself, but also the processes involved in its manufacture and applications. In this area we frequently work hand in hand with our colleagues from the disciplines of medical technology, mechanical engineering and physics.