Patents – Life Sciences

The Life Sciences practice group at Forresters comprises 7 fully qualified patent attorneys, as well as a number of trainees.  Between us, we have over 100 years of experience, providing clear and practical advice to guide our clients through the process of protecting their intellectual property.

In today’s economically fragile world, patents in this sector are more important than ever in bringing new technology to patients and other types of consumers. We understand the commercial need to build and align patent strategies around research and regulatory frameworks.

We represent clients before the European Patent Office (“EPO”), as well as the UK Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO). Through our network of associates, we also have the resources to manage our clients’ global portfolios.  We have expertise in a wide range of biotech fields ranging from biologics to medical devices. All of our attorneys have a technical background in biological sciences and/or chemistry to at least degree level, with some of us also having a doctorate.

Securing patents for inventions in this field in Europe can be challenging, as certain aspects of the technology are excluded from patentability in Europe. We are experts in navigating European patent law and obtaining commercially useful patents for our clients, handling all stages of the process, from drafting through prosecution, grant, and validation.

Once your patent is granted, the story may of course not end there. We also have substantial expertise in handling post-grant proceedings, particularly EPO opposition and appeal proceedings (both defending and opposing). We have also been heavily involved in some high profile UK Court cases.  For instance, Ross Walker and a former partner successfully defended Angiotech’s European patent for the TAXUSTM stent in the landmark case, Conor Medsystems Inc vs. Angiotech Pharmaceuticals Inc, before the UK House of Lords (now the Supreme Court), having previously also won the corresponding oppositions and appeals at the EPO.

As we are a full service team, we can also assist clients by preparing opinions on potential patent infringement, freedom to operate, and due diligence, as well as obtaining supplementary protection certificates (“SPC’s”) and plant variety rights.