Our lawyers have expertise in biotechnology patents, licensing biotechnology innovation, biological material transfer contracts, confidentiality agreements and sponsored research agreements, litigation and dispute resolution, designing around patents and regulatory approvals of new drugs (including biologics) and foods.
The application process for a patent covering biotechnology is the same as that for other patent applications; however, prior to filing an application, applicants may have to make a specimen deposit. Biotechnology patents are subject to the same protection period as other patents but complex life forms such as genetically engineered plants and animals are not patentable in Canada. Modified genes, expression vectors, probes, modified proteins, monoclonal antibodies and receptors, cells and other chemical compounds such as small organic molecules are patentable. Plant varieties produced through traditional cross-breeding techniques may be protected under Plant Breeders’ Rights laws.
We work with many of Canada’s top medical and agricultural biotechnology companies, research institutes and universities. The inventors we deal with have made achievements that are recognized in top journals, including Nature and Science.
Biotechnology patent law operates under the same general legal principles as other areas of patent law. However, the nature of biotechnology raises many unique patent law issues.
Biotechnology law is becoming more complex in all industrialized nations of the world. Long lasting, broad, international patent protection is vital to ensure a financial return after an invention travels the long pipeline from lab to marketplace.
In a complex legal environment, knowledgeable technology owners place a premium on advisers with cutting edge biotechnology experience. Deeth Williams Wall LLP has experience as lead counsel in complex biotechnology matters. For example, one of our clients recently discovered a gene that causes a fatal neurological disease. Another discovered a gene that dramatically improves crop yields. We helped our clients to protect or commercialize these inventions. We advised on what may be the largest industry-university collaboration in Canadian history. The collaboration stemmed from a biotechnological invention.