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BIO and USPTO Trace the Journey of Biotech Inventions

May 5, 2011
BIO will be co-hosting an event with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the issuance of U.S. patent 4,259,444 to Ananda Chakrabarty following the Supreme Court case, Diamond v. Chakrabarty, which held that Chakrabarty’s bioengineered bacterium was eligible for patenting.  The event will be held during the BIO International Convention on the morning of Thursday, June 30, at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C.

The pivotal patent eligibility decision in Chakrabarty has led to patenting of numerous breakthrough inventions in diverse technologies including medical therapy, agriculture, and renewable fuels. This landmark case was instrumental in the creation of a dynamic and flourishing biotech industry.  By way of the Chakrabarty decision, the Court provided assurance to biotech companies and their investors that emerging technologies could be protected by the patent system even though they could not have been foreseen when the system was created 200 years earlier.

In addition to remarks by USPTO Director David Kappos, USPTO Deputy Director Teresa Rea and BIO President and CEO James Greenwood, the event will feature a technology showcase of breakthrough biotech inventions of the past 30 years, as well as a panel discussion tracing the journey of a biotech invention from the university to the USPTO to the marketplace.