Tag Archives: Patent

2013 Mid-Year Review of Nanotech Patent Class 977

For the first time, the USPTO is on pace to issue over 1,000 patents of nanotechnology class 977 in a single year. From 1/1/2013 to 6/30/2013, the USPTO issued 531 patents of nanotechnology class 977. Among them, 278 patents (52.4%) have at least one assignee located in the United States, proving that the US continues to be … Continue reading this entry

Maximizing the Value of Pre-AIA Patent Applications Using First-to-File Regime – Part III

In this final post of our trilogy, we present a third scenario where the first-to-file regime under AIA offers previously unavailable opportunities for disqualifying certain prior art references. The fact pattern is as follows: Inventor X made a novel base nanomaterial and filed a US patent application on January 1, 2009 (Application A), which was assigned to Company … Continue reading this entry

Maximizing the Value of Pre-AIA Patent Applications Using First-to-File Regime – Part II

Authored by Peng Sun* and Tianran Yan Our previous post discussed the need for invoking the first-to-file regime in order to maximize the value of certain pre-AIA applications that claim foreign priorities.  Here, we present another scenario where the different prior art standards between the AIA and the pre-AIA patent law is likely to justify a … Continue reading this entry

Will the Supreme Court Limit Nanotech Patents?

In a case styled The Association for Molecular Pathology v. Myriad Genetics, the Supreme Court is confronting the question of whether or not human genes are patent eligible under 35 U.S.C. 101. A decision is expected in the near future. A primary argument of the parties opposing gene patents is that such patents prevent others from conducting … Continue reading this entry

Nanomedicine Hitting Its Stride? Beware of Patent Risks

Though the first nanoparticulate drug formulation was approved by the U.S. FDA way back in 1995, a recent flurry of deals and product approvals have shown increasingly high valuations for nanomedicine companies. As with any hot technology area, investors should carefully consider the patent landscape before plunging in. Patent activity in nanomedicine has grown exponentially … Continue reading this entry

Update on Nanotechnology Class 977 Patent Filings in 2013 - the Patent Race Slows an Ounce?

2013 is flying by, remarkably fast, so it was time to check how the class 977 patent filings are coming for the new year. Last year provided a record 4,098 nanotechnology publications. After 16 weeks in 2013, the PTO is on pace to publish 3,478 nanotechnology publications. While the number is projected to be lower, there is still clearly … Continue reading this entry

Urgent: Time Flying in 2013 as First-to-File and New Fee Systems Now Arriving!

An updated URGENT alert that the new U.S. first-to-file patent reform laws are now less than two weeks away. Many companies, whether nanotech, cleantech, biotech, or other types of emerging technology companies, should consider the merits of filing new, quality patent applications by March 15, 2013. Time is flying in 2013. The USPTO recently issued its finalized rules … Continue reading this entry

Nanomedicine Showing its Value ....and the Press is Noticing

The Economist, one of the more worthy media sources these days for connecting technology to larger society, included a page on nanomedicine in its special issue, “The World in 2013.” (page 128). The article is by Professors Omid Farokhzad and Rober Langer and focuses on bio nanotechnology from BIND Biosciences. BIND recently announced a development deal with Amgen. Professor … Continue reading this entry

Nanotech Patent Publication Record Explosion Continues for 2012

Patent publications continued last week on Thursday, despite Thanksgiving. We checked. The USPTO continues to be on pace to publish about 4,000 nanotech class 977 patent publications in 2012. This would be a record as the previous high last year was 3,439. This record explosion is a solid, long-term trend, representing a substantive increase of at least 15%, as noted … Continue reading this entry

The Value of IP: Concern re: IP "Going to China" in A123 Bankruptcy

Media reports re A123 System’s bankruptcy confirm that A123′s intellectual property is an important part throughout the lifecycle of a struggling company. While Johnson Controls was an initial suitor for A123′s assets, the Wanxiang Group is also now inserting itself into the bankruptcy proceeding. However, concern is present that the IP could “go to China.” In any event, stay tuned. Emerging … Continue reading this entry

Advanced Materials Subject of Supreme Court Petition in Collaborative Research Context

W.L. Gore & Associates, Inc. is now petitioning to the Supreme Court over a long-running case involving joint inventorship law. In an era of collaborative research, joint inventorship law continues to be a critical aspect of groups and individuals communicating with each other over technology innovation. The technology behind the patent issue is the Gore-Tex(R) expanded polytetrafluoroethylene advanced material … Continue reading this entry

Patents on Treatment of Hydraulic Fracturing Water

We continue to monitor patent literature for water and liquid treatment technologies related to hydraulic fracturing (see our October 7, 2012 blog entry, for example). We did not see as many granted patents in 2010 and 2011 compared to 2012 (likely a trend reflecting the increased importance of hydraulic fracturing in recent years). One exception … Continue reading this entry

NNI's Sensors: New Federal Nanosensor Initiative Announced

The NNI is now presenting to the public a new signature initiative devoted to sensors. Two thrusts are identified: (1) use of nanotechnology in building sensors, and (2) develop better sensing methods for detecting nanomaterials. An associated white paper provides more details. This is the fifth signature initiative from the NNI. According to the announcement, past sensor work has been … Continue reading this entry

USPTO Updates: Clean Tech & Customer Partnership Meeting, June 12, 2012

The USPTO is now announcing that its next clean tech customer partnership meeting will be held on June 12, 2012 at 1-5 p.m. at its Alexandria, VA campus (South Auditorium, Madison Building). Those who wish to attend can contact Jill Warden, 571-272-1267 (jillwarden@uspto.gov). This will be the second customer partnership meeting; the first was held in May … Continue reading this entry

Recent Hydraulic Fracturing Patenting Shows Connections With Cleantech and Nanotech

Hydraulic fracturing (HF) has become a substantial economic force and the subject of strong policy debate. HF has several connections to cleantech, including issues of water treatment and disposal. Recent patents related to water and cleantech include, for example, USP 8,119,007 to MIT, 8,110,115 to Ibex, and 8,105,488 to Anticline Disposal. U.S. Patents that refer to HF now grant … Continue reading this entry

Natural Gas, Cleantech, and 2012

Secretary of Energy Steven Chu visited Pittsburgh today to review energy, natural gas, and innovation. In his remarks, he spoke of using shale natural gas as a balancing tool for wind and solar power. Chu also stressed the role of patents in innovation. I noted discussion today at a Nanobusiness Commercialization Association meeting re role of nanotech in shale … Continue reading this entry

Domestic Inventing in Hydraulic Fracturing Arts

President Obama’s recent State of the Union address spoke of domestic oil and gas industry including shale gas (“American-made energy”). A leading but controversial technology for this industry is, of course, hydraulic fracturing. A brief review of the patent literature for 2012 confirms that inventors in this area for US patent filings are largely from the US. In a … Continue reading this entry

Military Leads Early 2012 Funding of Nanotech U.S. Patent Publications

2012 is well underway with class 977 nanotech patent publications continuing to issue at high rates. We have noted the explosive growth of 977 nanotech patenting many times previously. To date in 2012, 219 patent publications have published in the 977 patent class, which projects early on to about 2,850 patent publications for the year. While it … Continue reading this entry

2011 Finishes with Record Number of Nanotech 977 Patent Publications

Building on our prior December 10, 2011 blog post, we can now confirm as 2011 finishes that the PTO on Thursday set a record in publishing nanotech 977 patents. The final count for the year was 3,439. Last year was only 2,770, in contrast (2009 was only 1,499). Will investors and the federal government take … Continue reading this entry

Nanotech Patent Counting in 2011: Record Numbers, Slight Growth... Good Management

Today, Tuesday, was the last day in 2011 in which the US PTO granted patents (actually, the clock is now unfortunately past midnight so seems it was yesterday now). The 977 nanotech patent count for 2011 is now in: 792 nanotech patents were granted (classified as 977 patents). That is up from 780 in 2010, and only 532 … Continue reading this entry

US PTO to Improve Patent Examination Methods Using Prize and Software Tournament ($50,000)

The Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) has indicated that 900 registrants will seek a $50,000 innovation prize for winning a software tournament, the goal of which is to improve the US PTO examination process.   Hopefully, the innovation will be the subject of a patent application – and that the PTO will wave the normal … Continue reading this entry

PTO to Terminate its Successful Greentech Patent Program in Favor of Track I (Curiously)

Some curious end-of-year activity for one government agency: the US PTO announced on December 15, 2011 through the Federal Register that it will extend – but also terminate – the Greentech accelerated examination program. The program was set to expire at the end of December but it will be extended to March 30, 2012. If, however, … Continue reading this entry

Nanotechnology in the Popular Press: Another Excellent, Recent Example from The Economist

Nanotechnology has made it again into some mainstream press. The December 3, 2011 edition of The Economist has a 28 page Technology Quarterly which is a must-read for those that follow nanotech. Nanotechnology’s role in commercialization efforts is noted in several of the articles – good to see! First, there is “Getting Past the Guards,” an article on … Continue reading this entry

Patent Explosion for 977 Patent Publications Continues as 2011 Finishes

Patent filing data are suggesting (if not confirming) that nanotechnology is an increasingly important technology sector in the U.S. For example, in 2004, the US PTO created the 977 nanotechnology class which provides a useful metric. In 2011, the 10,000th nanotechnology 977 patent publication published. The current patent publication count stands at 10,735 (as of December 8, 2011). … Continue reading this entry