We asked Relecura, which has a web-based IP analytics platform for analyzing and commercializing patents and patent portfolios, to examine patent information on life sciences in 2013, using keywords and patent classification codes. The result: Relecura found 265 life science patent transactions from universities to corporate entities.* Click on the LS data2 link below to see Relecura’s list of the universities most active at assigning patents to corporate entities (Table 1), and the corporations that acquired the most life science patents (Table 2). Relecura also broke out the results by country (Fig. 1)
Relecura points out that while US universities top the list, academic institutions from other geographies, especially those from Japan, were active with patent re-assignments to US corporations. Also, the relatively low number of reassignments could indicate the possibility of corporations accepting licenses instead of insisting that patents be assigned to them. Regardless, New York University, Florida Atlantic University and Ordway Research Institute were quite active in 2013, and the corporate entities list is topped by Sythezyme. The US is far and ahead the leader in life science patent transactions, but Japan is very solidly second.
The hard data behind the tables and figure can be found here.
*A few caveats: This analysis was restricted to US patent applications where assignment transfer records are available at the USPTO, and the information was taken from the public domain. It also should be noted that many IP licensing deals are not published or recorded through reassignments, and thus are not included in these data.