The history of nanotech

Despite nanotechnology being a relatively recent development in scientific research, the development of its central concepts have taken place over a longer period of time. (more…)

What patents already exist in nanotechnology?

According to StatNano, a total of 13,046 published patent applications related to nanotechnology were filed at the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and the European Patent Office (EPO) in 2018. (more…)

Leading patent attorney advises University of Cambridge/Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew spin-out combatting antimicrobial resistance

A leading patent attorney is advising a new UK spin-out which has been established to find new ways of combatting antimicrobial resistance.

Adrian Bradley, a partner and chartered patent attorney at London-based Cleveland IP, is advising Polypharmarkos Limited, a spin-out from the University of Cambridge and the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

Polypharmarkos has been established to look for antimicrobially active substances with novel mechanisms of action in natural-product sources of plant, fungal and insect origin and to develop them to address the emerging global antimicrobial resistance (AMR) crisis.

The firm has recently benefited from a £500,000 investment from Cambridge Enterprise and the University of Cambridge Investment Fund to help it pursue this goal.

Adrian said: “I am delighted to be working with Polypharmarkos to help ensure that the intellectual property they develop as part of their efforts to combat this growing problem is protected.”

“Protecting, and effectively commercialising, the intellectual property belonging to spin-outs such as Polypharmarkos is crucial to maximising returns for investors and thus encouraging further investment in support of the fight against AMR.”

Adrian has an extensive track-record of advising on the protection and commercialisation of academic research and is a member of the business advisory board at the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry, Prague.[:]

Leading UK Patent Attorney chairs webinar on the patentability of diagnostics in the US

A leading UK-based Patent Attorney has chaired a webinar on ‘the patentability of diagnostics in the US’.

Adrian Bradley, a partner at London-based Cleveland IP chaired the webinar on Wednesday 25 January 2017, organised by the Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys (CIPA).

The webinar took place after a series of decisions by the US Supreme Court effectively limited the patentability of diagnostics in the US. The speaker, Rachal Winger, Patent Attorney and Partner at US firm Lee & Hayes discussed how applicants can maximise the possibility of success when seeking to patent diagnostic inventions in the US.

Adrian said: “The patentability of diagnostics in the US is a critical issue, not only for the firms looking to protect their intellectual property, but also for doctors and patients.

“Patents provide a legal framework that incentivises investment in innovation and there is nowhere that this is more important than in the medical sector.

“I know the professional participants in this webinar will have found the discussion valuable and useful for their own practice.”

[:]

Fast Track Patent Prosecution at the EPO

Fast Track Patent Prosecution at the EPO

Patent applicants are sometimes frustrated by the time it can take the European Patent Office (EPO) to process their application. However it is possible to accelerate the search and examination stages of a European patent application using the ‘Procedure for Accelerated Prosecution of European Patent Applications’ (PACE).

Although the PACE program has been in place for a while, the EPO has recently made some changes to streamline the program.

There are no official fees for requesting PACE and the request is not made public. As a guideline, if an application is accelerated under PACE:

– the search report should be issued within 6 months;

– the first examination report should be issued within 3 months; and

– each subsequent communication should be issued within 3 months of receipt of the applicant’s response.

The actual time taken may vary slightly depending on the EPO’s workload in the particular technical field.

Entry onto the PACE programme is not permanent. An application will be removed from the PACE programme if:

– the PACE request is voluntarily withdrawn

– an extension of any time limit is requested; or

– the application has been refused, withdrawn, or is deemed withdrawn.

PACE will also be suspended if the renewal fees are not paid on time.

As PACE can only be requested once for the search stage and once for the examination stage, if an application is removed from the PACE programme it is not possible to re-enter for the same stage.

While there is no limit to the number of applications for which PACE can be requested, the EPO may ask applicants to limit their PACE requests if they have requested to accelerate most or all of their applications.

Success at Southern Manufacturing!

Tom Faulkner and Nick Bennett have just completed an excellent three days attending the Southern Manufacturing & Electronics Exhibition at Farnborough.  We’ve made several interesting new contacts, with whom we’ll be following up as promised over the next few days.  We’ve picked up a lot of new ideas, as well, as you always do at big exhibitions like Southern.  Nick Bennett’s seminar on intellectual property protection was well received – it’s always good to have lots of questions at the end – and if you would like a copy of his slides just contact him.  You’ll find his details in the “people” section of the website.  All in all, a worthwhile experience, and we look forward to our next exhibition at the Going Global show (part of The Business Show) at Excel on 11 & 12 May 2016.[:zh]Tom Faulkner and Nick Bennett have just completed an excellent three days attending the Southern Manufacturing & Electronics Exhibition at Farnborough.  We’ve made several interesting new contacts, with whom we’ll be following up as promised over the next few days.  We’ve picked up a lot of new ideas, as well, as you always do at big exhibitions like Southern.  Nick Bennett’s seminar on intellectual property protection was well received – it’s always good to have lots of questions at the end – and if you would like a copy of his slides just contact him.  You’ll find his details in the “people” section of the website.  All in all, a worthwhile experience, and we look forward to our next exhibition at the Going Global show (part of The Business Show) at Excel on 11 & 12 May 2016.[:ja]Tom Faulkner and Nick Bennett have just completed an excellent three days attending the Southern Manufacturing & Electronics Exhibition at Farnborough.  We’ve made several interesting new contacts, with whom we’ll be following up as promised over the next few days.  We’ve picked up a lot of new ideas, as well, as you always do at big exhibitions like Southern.  Nick Bennett’s seminar on intellectual property protection was well received – it’s always good to have lots of questions at the end – and if you would like a copy of his slides just contact him.  You’ll find his details in the “people” section of the website.  All in all, a worthwhile experience, and we look forward to our next exhibition at the Going Global show (part of The Business Show) at Excel on 11 & 12 May 2016.[:]

Going Global

Cleveland exhibited at the Going Global show at Kensington Olympia on 3 and 4 December 2015.

Nick Bennett, a patent attorney in our chemistry department, delivered a brief introduction to intellectual property.  The talk covered the assets which your business might be able to protect, for example your inventions, your brand or the aesthetic appeal of your products.[:zh]Cleveland will be exhibiting at the Going Global show at Kensington Olympia on 3 and 4 December 2015.

Nick Bennett, a patent attorney in our chemistry department, will deliver a brief introduction to intellectual property at 14.00-14.30 on Thursday 3 December in Hall 20. Patents, registered designs, trademarks and copyright will all be discussed. The talk will also cover the assets which your business might be able to protect, for example your inventions, your brand or the aesthetic appeal of your products. This will be done with an eye on protection in your markets overseas, as well as in the UK.

Feel free to visit us at stand G186 or drop in at Nick’s talk.[:ja]Cleveland will be exhibiting at the Going Global show at Kensington Olympia on 3 and 4 December 2015.

Nick Bennett, a patent attorney in our chemistry department, will deliver a brief introduction to intellectual property at 14.00-14.30 on Thursday 3 December in Hall 20. Patents, registered designs, trademarks and copyright will all be discussed. The talk will also cover the assets which your business might be able to protect, for example your inventions, your brand or the aesthetic appeal of your products. This will be done with an eye on protection in your markets overseas, as well as in the UK.

Feel free to visit us at stand G186 or drop in at Nick’s talk.[:]

Poisonous Divisionals – Antidote or Bust – Update

We discussed the poisonous divisionals and poisonous priority issue in our previous post and mentioned that the question of how to deal with such situations has been referred to the Enlarged Board of Appeal G1/15.

The European Patent Office have now decided to stay examination and opposition proceedings where the result of the proceedings “depends entirely” on how the Enlarged Board answers the points of law referred to it. Details can be found in a notice from the European Patent Office.[:zh]We discussed the poisonous divisionals and poisonous priority issue in our previous post and mentioned that the question of how to deal with such situations has been referred to the Enlarged Board of Appeal G1/15.

The European Patent Office have now decided to stay examination and opposition proceedings where the result of the proceedings “depends entirely” on how the Enlarged Board answers the points of law referred to it. Details can be found in a notice from the European Patent Office.[:ja]We discussed the poisonous divisionals and poisonous priority issue in our previous post and mentioned that the question of how to deal with such situations has been referred to the Enlarged Board of Appeal G1/15.

The European Patent Office have now decided to stay examination and opposition proceedings where the result of the proceedings “depends entirely” on how the Enlarged Board answers the points of law referred to it. Details can be found in a notice from the European Patent Office.[:]

European patents in Moldova

The EPO has now reached an agreement with the Republic of Moldova which will allow European patents to take legal effect in Moldova. From 1 November 2015, any newly filed European or PCT patent application (that is subsequently extended into Europe) will have the option of being validated in Moldova.

Any application filed on or after the 1 November will be deemed to have requested validation in Moldova. However, this will only take effect if the Moldovan validation fee is paid after grant. These patents will then confer the same legal protection as national patents granted in Moldova.

The entry into force of the validation agreement with Moldova means that it will be possible to obtain patent protection in 42 countries with a single European patent application. This includes the 38 EPO member states, the two extension states Bosnia-Herzegovina and Montenegro, and Morocco, with which the EPO also has a validation agreement. It seems likely that this number will soon rise to 43 as the EPO is likely to agree a similar validation agreement with Tunisia in the near future.

This validation agreement with Moldova builds on a similar agreement for Morocco which was agreed on 1 March 2015. It develops an interesting trend where examination by the EPO is relied upon by countries that are not party to the European Patent Convention.   It will be interesting to see how this develops in the coming years.[:zh]The EPO has now reached an agreement with the Republic of Moldova which will allow European patents to take legal effect in Moldova. From 1 November 2015, any newly filed European or PCT patent application (that is subsequently extended into Europe) will have the option of being validated in Moldova.

Any application filed on or after the 1 November will be deemed to have requested validation in Moldova. However, this will only take effect if the Moldovan validation fee is paid after grant. These patents will then confer the same legal protection as national patents granted in Moldova.

The entry into force of the validation agreement with Moldova means that it will be possible to obtain patent protection in 42 countries with a single European patent application. This includes the 38 EPO member states, the two extension states Bosnia-Herzegovina and Montenegro, and Morocco, with which the EPO also has a validation agreement. It seems likely that this number will soon rise to 43 as the EPO is likely to agree a similar validation agreement with Tunisia in the near future.

This validation agreement with Moldova builds on a similar agreement for Morocco which was agreed on 1 March 2015. It develops an interesting trend where examination by the EPO is relied upon by countries that are not party to the European Patent Convention.   It will be interesting to see how this develops in the coming years.[:ja]The EPO has now reached an agreement with the Republic of Moldova which will allow European patents to take legal effect in Moldova. From 1 November 2015, any newly filed European or PCT patent application (that is subsequently extended into Europe) will have the option of being validated in Moldova.

Any application filed on or after the 1 November will be deemed to have requested validation in Moldova. However, this will only take effect if the Moldovan validation fee is paid after grant. These patents will then confer the same legal protection as national patents granted in Moldova.

The entry into force of the validation agreement with Moldova means that it will be possible to obtain patent protection in 42 countries with a single European patent application. This includes the 38 EPO member states, the two extension states Bosnia-Herzegovina and Montenegro, and Morocco, with which the EPO also has a validation agreement. It seems likely that this number will soon rise to 43 as the EPO is likely to agree a similar validation agreement with Tunisia in the near future.

This validation agreement with Moldova builds on a similar agreement for Morocco which was agreed on 1 March 2015. It develops an interesting trend where examination by the EPO is relied upon by countries that are not party to the European Patent Convention.   It will be interesting to see how this develops in the coming years.[:]

The Unified Patent Court – how to opt out

The unitary patent, and the Unified Patent Court (UPC) that will have exclusive jurisdiction over it, represent the most significant development in European patent law for some decades. Whether or not they have an interest in making use of the new system, holders of and applicants for European patents must take note of the introduction of the system, since they will be obliged to opt out of it if they do not wish the new Court to have exclusive jurisdiction over their existing, granted European patents.

The unitary patent will be available, and the UPC will formally come into existence, three months after the date that 13 member states including the UK, France and Germany have ratified the UPC Agreement.   The system also provides the possibility for holders of granted European patents to opt out. A significant proportion of European patent holders are likely to opt out to avoid the risk of central revocation, a possibility provided for by the new system.

Any opt out requests will be processed by the Registry of the UPC. This creates a conundrum because, without a court in existence there can be no registry. This issue had caused some confusion, and has raised the prospect of a deluge of opt-out demands on day 1 of operation of the court.

A potential solution has been provided by the Protocol to the Agreement on a Unified Patent Court (“the protocol”). The protocol will allow some parts of the UPC Agreement to be applied early. This includes final decisions on the practical set up of the Court, for example, the recruitment of judges and testing of IT systems. The provisional application phase will also be used to allow for early registration of opt-out demands. The protocol was signed by representatives of seven participating member states on 1 October 2015, and thirteen signatures are needed for it to be effective.

The practical upshot is that the UPC Registry should be up and running before the entry into force of the new system, and opt-out demands will be recorded by the day it comes into force.

This is the latest step towards bringing the Unified Patent Court into operation. The Preparatory Committee aims to complete its work by June 2016 with a view to the UPC opening at the start of 2017. We will communicate the exact timing as soon as we learn of it.[:zh]The unitary patent, and the Unified Patent Court (UPC) that will have exclusive jurisdiction over it, represent the most significant development in European patent law for some decades. Whether or not they have an interest in making use of the new system, holders of and applicants for European patents must take note of the introduction of the system, since they will be obliged to opt out of it if they do not wish the new Court to have exclusive jurisdiction over their existing, granted European patents.

The unitary patent will be available, and the UPC will formally come into existence, three months after the date that 13 member states including the UK, France and Germany have ratified the UPC Agreement.   The system also provides the possibility for holders of granted European patents to opt out. A significant proportion of European patent holders are likely to opt out to avoid the risk of central revocation, a possibility provided for by the new system.

Any opt out requests will be processed by the Registry of the UPC. This creates a conundrum because, without a court in existence there can be no registry. This issue had caused some confusion, and has raised the prospect of a deluge of opt-out demands on day 1 of operation of the court.

A potential solution has been provided by the Protocol to the Agreement on a Unified

Patent Court (“the protocol”). The protocol will allow some parts of the UPC Agreement to be applied early. This includes final decisions on the practical set up of the Court, for example, the recruitment of judges and testing of IT systems. The provisional application phase will also be used to allow for early registration of opt-out demands. The protocol was signed by representatives of seven participating member states on 1 October 2015, and thirteen signatures are needed for it to be effective.

The practical upshot is that the UPC Registry should be up and running before the entry into force of the new system, and opt-out demands will be recorded by the day it comes into force.

This is the latest step towards bringing the Unified Patent Court into operation. The Preparatory Committee aims to complete its work by June 2016 with a view to the UPC opening at the start of 2017. We will communicate the exact timing as soon as we learn of it.[:ja]The unitary patent, and the Unified Patent Court (UPC) that will have exclusive jurisdiction over it, represent the most significant development in European patent law for some decades. Whether or not they have an interest in making use of the new system, holders of and applicants for European patents must take note of the introduction of the system, since they will be obliged to opt out of it if they do not wish the new Court to have exclusive jurisdiction over their existing, granted European patents.

The unitary patent will be available, and the UPC will formally come into existence, three months after the date that 13 member states including the UK, France and Germany have ratified the UPC Agreement.   The system also provides the possibility for holders of granted European patents to opt out. A significant proportion of European patent holders are likely to opt out to avoid the risk of central revocation, a possibility provided for by the new system.

Any opt out requests will be processed by the Registry of the UPC. This creates a conundrum because, without a court in existence there can be no registry. This issue had caused some confusion, and has raised the prospect of a deluge of opt-out demands on day 1 of operation of the court.

A potential solution has been provided by the Protocol to the Agreement on a Unified

Patent Court (“the protocol”). The protocol will allow some parts of the UPC Agreement to be applied early. This includes final decisions on the practical set up of the Court, for example, the recruitment of judges and testing of IT systems. The provisional application phase will also be used to allow for early registration of opt-out demands. The protocol was signed by representatives of seven participating member states on 1 October 2015, and thirteen signatures are needed for it to be effective.

The practical upshot is that the UPC Registry should be up and running before the entry into force of the new system, and opt-out demands will be recorded by the day it comes into force.

This is the latest step towards bringing the Unified Patent Court into operation. The Preparatory Committee aims to complete its work by June 2016 with a view to the UPC opening at the start of 2017. We will communicate the exact timing as soon as we learn of it.[:]