Best Lawyers for Patent Law in America

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Lawyer
  • Location:
    New York, New York
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Patent Law Litigation - Patent
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Seattle, Washington
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Copyright Law Information Technology Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    San Diego, California
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Patent Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Pontiac, Michigan
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Winston-Salem, North Carolina
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Jacksonville, Florida Orlando, Florida
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Litigation - Patent Trademark Law Copyright Law Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Seattle, Washington
  • Practice Areas:
    Trademark Law Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Red Bank, New Jersey
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Trademark Law Copyright Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Patent Law Arbitration Litigation - Intellectual Property
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Southfield, Michigan
  • Practice Areas:
    Trademark Law Litigation - Intellectual Property Litigation - Patent Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Seattle, Washington
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Houston, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Trademark Law Litigation - Patent Trade Secrets Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Ann Arbor, Michigan
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    McLean, Virginia
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Patent Law Litigation - Patent
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Patent Law
Lawyer
Robert L. Baechtold was awarded  "Lawyer of the Year" in

Robert L. Baechtold

Venable LLP
  • Location:
    New York, New York
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Litigation - Patent Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charlotte, North Carolina
  • Practice Areas:
    Copyright Law Litigation - Intellectual Property Trademark Law Litigation - Patent Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
Ilan  Barzilay was awarded  "Lawyer of the Year" in

Ilan Barzilay

Pierce Atwood LLP
  • Location:
    Boston, Massachusetts
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Boston, Massachusetts
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Litigation - Patent Litigation - Intellectual Property
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Nashville, Tennessee
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Patent Trademark Law Copyright Law Patent Law Litigation - Intellectual Property Trade Secrets Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Litigation - Intellectual Property
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Litigation - Patent Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Denver, Colorado
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Seattle, Washington
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law CleanTech Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Boston, Massachusetts
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Litigation - Intellectual Property Copyright Law Trademark Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Seattle, Washington
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Litigation - Patent Trade Secrets Law Patent Law Trademark Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Nashville, Tennessee
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Copyright Law Patent Law Trademark Law Litigation - Patent
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Patent Law Litigation - Patent
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charlotte, North Carolina
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Litigation - Patent
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Denver, Colorado
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
  • Practice Areas:
    Technology Law Trademark Law Trade Secrets Law Litigation - Intellectual Property Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Concord, Massachusetts
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Litigation - Patent
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Fort Wayne, Indiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Patent Law Litigation - Intellectual Property Trademark Law Litigation - Patent Bet-the-Company Litigation Copyright Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Denver, Colorado
  • Practice Areas:
    Biotechnology and Life Sciences Practice Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Litigation - Intellectual Property
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Scottsdale, Arizona
  • Practice Areas:
    Copyright Law Litigation - Intellectual Property Patent Law Litigation - Patent
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Practice Areas:
    Information Technology Law Patent Law Trademark Law Litigation - Patent Copyright Law Commercial Litigation Trade Secrets Law Litigation - Intellectual Property
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Boston, Massachusetts
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Patent Law Copyright Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Boston, Massachusetts
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Winston-Salem, North Carolina
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Patent Litigation - Intellectual Property Patent Law Biotechnology and Life Sciences Practice
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Park City, Utah
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Southfield, Michigan
  • Practice Areas:
    Trademark Law Litigation - Intellectual Property Patent Law Litigation - Patent
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Boston, Massachusetts
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Huntsville, Alabama
  • Practice Areas:
    Trademark Law Trade Secrets Law Litigation - Patent Copyright Law Litigation - Intellectual Property Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Seattle, Washington
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Patent Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Concord, Massachusetts
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    San Diego, California
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Practice Areas:
    Copyright Law Litigation - Intellectual Property Trademark Law Patent Law Litigation - Patent
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Boston, Massachusetts
  • Practice Areas:
    Biotechnology and Life Sciences Practice Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Berkeley, California
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Houston, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
Morgan Chu was awarded 2020 "Lawyer of the Year" in Elasticsearch.PracticeArea

Morgan Chu

Irell & Manella LLP
  • Location:
    Los Angeles, California
  • Practice Areas:
    Information Technology Law Technology Law Litigation - Patent Patent Law Litigation - Intellectual Property Trademark Law Bet-the-Company Litigation Commercial Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Irvine, California
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Litigation - Patent Litigation - Intellectual Property Trademark Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Dallas, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Litigation - Patent Copyright Law Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New York, New York
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Patent Law Litigation - Patent
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Billings, Montana
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - ERISA Litigation - Patent Patent Law Litigation - Intellectual Property
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Trademark Law Patent Law Information Technology Law Technology Law Copyright Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Overland Park, Kansas
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Litigation - Patent Patent Law
Lawyer
Dominick A. Conde was awarded  "Lawyer of the Year" in

Dominick A. Conde

Venable LLP
  • Location:
    New York, New York
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Litigation - Intellectual Property
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Atlanta, Georgia
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Seattle, Washington
  • Practice Areas:
    Trademark Law Litigation - Intellectual Property Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Baltimore, Maryland
  • Practice Areas:
    Technology Law Litigation - Patent Patent Law Litigation - Intellectual Property
Lawyer
Robert N. Crouse was awarded  "Lawyer of the Year" in

Robert N. Crouse

Stanek Lemon Crouse + Meeks, PA
  • Location:
    Raleigh, North Carolina
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Seattle, Washington
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Phoenix, Arizona
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Trademark Law Technology Law Copyright Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Seattle, Washington
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Dallas, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Litigation - Patent Biotechnology and Life Sciences Practice Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Atlanta, Georgia
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Baltimore, Maryland
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Louisville, Kentucky
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Baton Rouge, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Technology Law Patent Law Trademark Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Seattle, Washington
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Litigation - Intellectual Property
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New York, New York
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Patent Patent Law Litigation - Intellectual Property
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Boston, Massachusetts
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Patent Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Pontiac, Michigan
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Litigation - Patent Litigation - Intellectual Property
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Seattle, Washington
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    St. Louis, Missouri
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Biotechnology and Life Sciences Practice
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Little Rock, Arkansas
  • Practice Areas:
    Trademark Law Patent Law Technology Law Copyright Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Atlanta, Georgia
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Boulder, Colorado
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Patent Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Denver, Colorado
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Patent Litigation - Intellectual Property Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Louisville, Kentucky
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Bern, North Carolina
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Construction Copyright Law Litigation - Patent Litigation - Intellectual Property Trademark Law Commercial Litigation Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charlotte, North Carolina
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Phoenix, Arizona
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Patent Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Denver, Colorado
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Concord, Massachusetts
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Coral Gables, Florida
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Patent Information Technology Law Patent Law Litigation - Intellectual Property
Lawyer
  • Location:
    St. Louis, Missouri
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Trademark Law Copyright Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Reston, Virginia
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Litigation - Patent Trademark Law Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Denver, Colorado
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Patent Patent Law Litigation - Intellectual Property Trademark Law
Lawyer
Robert E. Freitas was awarded  "Lawyer of the Year" in

Robert E. Freitas

Freitas & Weinberg LLP
  • Location:
    Redwood Shores, California
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Menlo Park, California
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Litigation - Intellectual Property Litigation - Patent Biotechnology and Life Sciences Practice
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Miami, Florida
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Trademark Law Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Winston-Salem, North Carolina
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Litigation - Patent Litigation - Intellectual Property
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Litigation - Patent Patent Law Trademark Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Austin, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charlotte, North Carolina
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Denver, Colorado
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Orlando, Florida
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Patent Law Litigation - Patent
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charlotte, North Carolina
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Trademark Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Cincinnati, Ohio
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Patent Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charlotte, North Carolina
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Denver, Colorado
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Atlanta, Georgia
  • Practice Areas:
    Biotechnology and Life Sciences Practice Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Boston, Massachusetts
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Litigation - Patent Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New York, New York
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Patent Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Bloomfield Hills, Michigan
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Trademark Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Louisville, Kentucky
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Huntsville, Alabama
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Patent Litigation - Intellectual Property Trademark Law Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Litigation - Intellectual Property
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Litigation - Patent Trade Secrets Law Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Portland, Oregon
  • Practice Areas:
    Copyright Law Patent Law Litigation - Intellectual Property Litigation - Patent
Lawyer
  • Location:
    San Francisco, California
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New York, New York
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    San Francisco, California
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Denver, Colorado
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Trademark Law Litigation - Intellectual Property Copyright Law Litigation - Patent Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Seattle, Washington
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Litigation - Patent
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Austin, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Biotechnology and Life Sciences Practice Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chattanooga, Tennessee
  • Practice Areas:
    Copyright Law Trademark Law Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Atlanta, Georgia
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Troy, Michigan
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Trademark Law Litigation - Patent Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Honolulu, Hawaii
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law Trademark Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New York, New York
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Litigation - Patent Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Austin, Texas Memphis, Tennessee Bentonville, Arkansas
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Madison, New Jersey
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Patent Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Seattle, Washington
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Washington, District of Columbia
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Practice Areas:
    Patent Law

  • Location:
  • Practice Areas:

Practice Area Definition

Patent Law Definition

A patent is a contract between an inventor and the government. The inventor provides a complete description of the invention to the public in an application for patent. This benefits the public by providing knowledge of the invention for use as a foundation for additional innovation. In return, if the invention is new (as compared to everything known to the public prior to the invention), a patent is issued. This patent gives the inventor a right to exclude others from making, using, offering for sale, or selling the patented invention throughout the United States, and from importing the invention into the United States, for the life of the patent, usually 20 years from filing. 

Grant of a patent does NOT itself give an inventor a right to exploit the patented invention – it only gives the inventor a right to exclude others from practicing the invention. For example, if an inventor makes an improvement to a previously patented machine, and gets a patent, the inventor can prevent the owner of the original patent from using the improvement. However, the inventor may not be able to exploit the improvement itself, at least until the original patent expires, because such exploitation might infringe that original patent. 

Title 35 of the United States Code (the “Patent Statutes”) set forth the standards and procedures for obtaining patents. Patents are granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), an agency of the Department of Commerce. 

The following items are patentable under these statutes:

  • Processes: new methods of doing something
  • Machines: engines, machinery, instruments, gadgets, etc.
  • Articles of manufacture: circuits, tools, structures made of metal, plastics, ceramics, etc.
  • Compositions of matter: new pharmaceuticals, chemical compounds, naturally occurring substances when substantially purified, DNA sequences, biological materials, e.g. bacteria, viruses, proteins and protein fragments, monoclonal antibodies, epitopes, and vectors.
  • Improvements in any of the above
  • Living organisms: genetically altered plants and animals.
  • Computer programs: alone and in conjunction with other equipment.
  • Business methods: methods for doing business, but not those solely directed to patenting abstract ideas.
  • Designs: ornamental aspects of articles of manufacture.
  • Non-patentable items include: nebulous concepts or ideas, laws of nature (e.g., gravity), mathematical algorithms alone (but computer-implemented mathematical algorithms producing a concrete, useful, and tangible result are patentable subject matter), and purely mental processes.

A key element to effective patent protection is writing patent claims that define the invention as broadly as possible, but without overlapping prior art that could make the patent invalid. This is generally best done by someone with skill and experience in patent practice, so consulting with a patent attorney is a wise choice.

Fish & Richardson P.C.

Fish & Richardson P.C.  logo

A patent is a contract between an inventor and the government. The inventor provides a complete description of the invention to the public in an application for patent. This benefits the public by providing knowledge of the invention for use as a foundation for additional innovation. In return, if the invention is new (as compared to everything known to the public prior to the invention), a patent is issued. This patent gives the inventor a right to exclude others from making, using, offering for sale, or selling the patented invention throughout the United States, and from importing the invention into the United States, for the life of the patent, usually 20 years from filing. 

Grant of a patent does NOT itself give an inventor a right to exploit the patented invention – it only gives the inventor a right to exclude others from practicing the invention. For example, if an inventor makes an improvement to a previously patented machine, and gets a patent, the inventor can prevent the owner of the original patent from using the improvement. However, the inventor may not be able to exploit the improvement itself, at least until the original patent expires, because such exploitation might infringe that original patent. 

Title 35 of the United States Code (the “Patent Statutes”) set forth the standards and procedures for obtaining patents. Patents are granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), an agency of the Department of Commerce. 

The following items are patentable under these statutes:

  • Processes: new methods of doing something
  • Machines: engines, machinery, instruments, gadgets, etc.
  • Articles of manufacture: circuits, tools, structures made of metal, plastics, ceramics, etc.
  • Compositions of matter: new pharmaceuticals, chemical compounds, naturally occurring substances when substantially purified, DNA sequences, biological materials, e.g. bacteria, viruses, proteins and protein fragments, monoclonal antibodies, epitopes, and vectors.
  • Improvements in any of the above
  • Living organisms: genetically altered plants and animals.
  • Computer programs: alone and in conjunction with other equipment.
  • Business methods: methods for doing business, but not those solely directed to patenting abstract ideas.
  • Designs: ornamental aspects of articles of manufacture.
  • Non-patentable items include: nebulous concepts or ideas, laws of nature (e.g., gravity), mathematical algorithms alone (but computer-implemented mathematical algorithms producing a concrete, useful, and tangible result are patentable subject matter), and purely mental processes.

A key element to effective patent protection is writing patent claims that define the invention as broadly as possible, but without overlapping prior art that could make the patent invalid. This is generally best done by someone with skill and experience in patent practice, so consulting with a patent attorney is a wise choice.