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LifeScience Academy Workshop: Innovation Leads – The Essential Guide to an Effective Patent Strategy

24.05.2016 @ 9:30 am - 4:30 pm

Workshop: Innovation Leads – The Essential Guide to an Effective Patent Strategy

What you need to know in an innovative organisation.
In co-operation with European Patent Attorneys from award winning Abel & Imray, Cardiff.

Intellectual property is of vital importance to the life science industry, and so developing an effective patents strategy is essential to the success of innovating companies in this field. This workshop has been designed to provide organisations in the life sciences, biotech and medical technology fields, with the knowledge and practical skills so that, working together with their patent attorneys, they can implement a successful patents strategy to enable them to exploit the value of the advances that they have made.

Who should attend?

The workshop will be of interest to those working in the life science field, in particular those working in R&D, within business development, or people working in the legal function. Expected participants include those working for university and NHS tech transfer organisations and start-up companies.

Workshop outline

This workshop will provide participants with a practical understanding of a range of key patent issues affecting innovative companies, and help them avoid common IP problems. The workshop includes practical group exercises and case studies to emphasise key points.

Morning session: Ingredients for creating a successful patent portfolio

Starting out – What are patents, and what they can do for you; fundamentals of patentability – novelty and inventive step; patentability vs. freedom to operate (FTO); overview of the patents system; when and whether to file; impact of publication on opportunities for patenting; getting ownership right and why it matters.

What needs to go into a patent specification – Anatomy of a patent specification; what do patent claims mean, considerations when deciding the scope of the claims; the role of examples/data in supporting an invention.

Patent opportunities in the life sciences/pharmaceutical/biotech/medical device fields – What a patent might be available for (new chemical entities; new therapeutic uses; gene patents, antibodies and diagnostic tests; medical devices; pharmaceutical forms and compositions).

Exercise: Identifying inventions and selecting opportunities for filing – Participants will work in groups considering a number of research projects and selecting which to file a patent application on, taking into account factors such as commercial importance, ease of enforceability, invention strength and ownership/inventorship issues.

Afternoon session: Using your patent portfolio effectively

Freedom to operate – When to carry out freedom to operate (FTO) studies; practical aspects of FTO studies; options for dealing with a FTO issue.

Exploitation of Patent Rights – Using your patents; selling and licensing patents; patent information packages for negotiations with licensing partners; confidentiality and privilege.

Exercise: Evaluating patent licensing opportunities – Participants will work in groups evaluating opportunities to license in a patent portfolio covering a pharmaceutical product, taking into account factors such as freedom to operate, patent portfolio strength and opportunities for improving patent position, putting into practice the knowledge they have gained throughout the day.


Tutors Julia Coggins, Simon Haslam and Tim Hewson, European Patent Attorneys from Abel & Imray, Cardiff, have brought together their knowledge of life sciences patenting to devise this workshop. They have extensive experience of advising university tech transfer organisations, start-ups and other research companies on patent matters.

Participation fee

The registration fee is £150 +VAT for members, £225 +VAT for non-members.  The fee includes refreshments, lunch, documentation and a certificate of participation confirming 6 hours of CPD undertaken.

Spaces are limited so that individual attention may be given in the exercises, but if the course is over-subscribed we would seek to run it again.

Contact Isabelle to reserve your place


9:30 am - 4:30 pm
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Mercure Cardiff Holland House Hotel
24-26 Newport Rd
Cardiff, CF24 0DD United Kingdom
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