The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2020 was awarded to Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer A. Doudna for their discovery of one of the sharpest tools in gene technology: the CRISPR/Cas9 genetic scissors. As is well known, Emmanuelle Charpentier made her ground-breaking finding about CRISPR/Cas 9 during her tenure at Umeå University.

CRISPR/Cas 9 obviously attracted immense commercial interest. What naturally followed was a fierce battle to secure patent protection for this technology. The patent battle revealed issues particularly relevant to inventions developed at universities and university based companies. What lessons can we learn from this battle? In particular, what can universities and university based companies do to avoid the potential pitfalls highlighted in the CRISPR/Cas 9 case?

During this seminar, European patent attorney Louise Tottie (Valea AB) and U.S. patent attorney Jonas Järvholm (Ballard Spahr LLP) will provide practical and strategical advice surrounding some of the more important issues in the CRISPR/Cas 9 case.

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Louise Tottie has an MSc in Chemical Engineering and obtained a PhD in Organic Chemistry in 1992 at the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm. Louise worked for ten years as an organic chemist for the pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca before joining the patent profession in 2003 at the company´s intellectual property department. Louise joined Valea in 2007. Louise handles patent work in the whole field of chemistry. She specializes in chemical and life science inventions, such as organic chemistry, pharmaceutical formulations and polymers. Louise files and prosecutes patent applications. She works closely with companies on identifying inventions and proposing patent portfolio management and also provides infringement and validity investigations, freedom-to-operate analyses and due diligent work.

Jonas Jarvholm is a member of the Chemical and Pharmaceutical, and Mechanical Technologies (including Medical Device and Ornamental Design), practice teams in the firm’s Patents Group. Jonas drafts and prosecutes patent applications and prepares patentability and non-infringement opinions, both domestically and internationally, covering chemical, mechanical, design, pharmaceutical, nanotechnology, and medical technologies. He also has experience with Post Grant Review (PGR) proceedings. He is licensed to practice before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

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