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Bipartisan Bill Will Strengthen Patent Rights and Protect U.S. Leadership in Biotechnology Innovation

Bipartisan Bill Will Strengthen Patent Rights and Protect U.S. Leadership in Biotechnology Innovation
Issue Time:2019-07-11

Strong patent rights are essential to finance the revolution in biotechnology discoveries from the lab to the patient, farmer, and consumer

WASHINGTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The House and Senate introduced important bipartisan legislation today that will reform the inter partes post-grant review process, bringing fairness and finality to these Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) proceedings. The bill, known as the STRONGER Patents Act, also will enhance patent quality by ensuring that all fees paid to the PTO are used for their intended purposes, and will crack down on abusive patent demand letters.

Strong intellectual property (IP) protections sustain America’s global leadership in biotechnology innovation and the creation of hundreds of thousands of high-wage, high-value jobs throughout our country. BIO has long supported the balanced and bipartisan reform proposals that were introduced today by Senator Coons, Senator Cotton, Representative Stivers, and Representative Foster, and we thank them for their leadership on this critically important issue.

“Ad hoc changes to our patent laws over the last 15 years, through legislation, agency actions, and court decisions, have severely weakened our patent system,” said Tom DiLenge, BIO’s President of Advocacy, Law & Public Policy Division. “America’s laws were once considered the gold standard for the rest of the world, now we are tied for second with 10 other economies. The bipartisan STRONGER Patents Act will address many deficiencies in the patent re-examination process, while protecting patent holders and small businesses from predatory demand letters.”

Without strong patent rights, the financing to take revolutionary biotechnology discoveries from the lab to the patient, farmer, and consumer would be unavailable. Weak or inconsistent patent protections threaten new investment in the innovation sector of our economy and, with it, the jobs and industries of the future.

BIO supports the STRONGER Patents Act and will continue to advocate for passage of legislation that better supports inventors, investors, and the people waiting for new innovations to improve their lives and their environment.

About BIO

BIO is the world’s largest trade association representing biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations across the United States and in more than 30 other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development of innovative healthcare, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products. BIO also produces the BIO International Convention, the world’s largest gathering of the biotechnology industry, along with industry-leading investor and partnering meetings held around the world. BIO produces BIOtechNOW, an online portal and monthly newsletter chronicling “innovations transforming our world.” Subscribe to BIOtechNOW.