Finding the Intellectual Property Protection That’s Right for You
What is the Purpose of Intellectual Property?
In academic medicine, patents are one of the most common forms of intellectual property protection because they can cover most health care innovations, including medical devices, systems, therapeutics and other compositions of matter and processes.
Is Intellectual Property Protection Right for You?
- Is anyone else working in this field? When considering intellectual property protection, take a close look at the work already being done in your field. A common reason intellectual property rights are rejected during the application process is that they are too similar to intellectual property already in existence—we can help you see what other work is being done in the same area. Protecting your work early combats the risk that someone else claims ownership before you and limits your ability to market products resulting from your idea or research. Our experts can help you determine if your research or idea has potential to be protected.
- Do you want to license your invention? If your goal is to commercialize your work and partner with industry to develop a product or process, establishing intellectual property protection can add value in the eyes of potential partners. The benefit of intellectual property—namely patents—is the guarantee of market exclusivity, which is a major incentive for companies interested in licensing novel health care technologies.
- Do you plan to publish your research? Though publication is essential for faculty researchers, putting information about your idea or invention out into the public before first seeking protection can restrict the rights you have to your own intellectual property. Look into protecting your ideas early before you publish in a journal, present at a conference or even apply for grant funding.
How Does Protection Work?
Wake Forest Innovations handles the patenting process, but here is more information to help you understand the journey:
Provisional Patent Filing
Full Patent Awarded
Have an Idea to Protect?
Intellectual Property Protection for Students
Keep in mind that, when conducting research under a supervisor or principal investigator, there can be limitations surrounding intellectual property claims. Keep your advisor well informed of your intentions to pursue protection and licensing opportunities.