Public Policy

AUTM keeps a watchful eye on certain public policy issues regardless of whether or not there is specific action to be taken at the present time. For more information, visit the on ongoing public policy issues page. Ongoing public policy issues include:

The Bayh-Dole Act

Be an advocate for this important piece of legislation. For background information on the Bayh-Dole Act, as well as talking points and tools you can use to advocate, visit the AUTM Bayh-Dole Act page.

Gene Patents and Licensing Practices

Gene patents and licensing practices have come under scrutiny following the Secretary's Advisory Committee on Genetics, Health, and Society (SACGHS) release of its Public Consultation Draft Report on Gene Patents and Licensing Practices and Their Impact on Patient Access to Genetic Tests. For more on this issue visit the Gene Patents and Licensing Practices page.

USPTO's Roundtable of Genetic Testing

On January 10, 2013 AUTM member, Lori Pressman, testified on behalf of AUTM at the USPTO's Roundtable of Genetic Testing. AUTM's written testimony and appendix is a helpful resource for anyone needing further information on this issue. Written testimony. Appendix.


Mayo Collaborative Services v. Prometheus Laboratories Inc.

In an unanimous decision, the Supreme Court held that the claims in Mayo Collaborative Services v. Prometheus Laboratories Inc. (Mayo) effectively claim a law of nature and are not patent-eligible under 35 U.S.C. § 101. Learn more.

Global Health

AUTM's Global Health Initiative promotes licensing practices that support access to essential medicines by developing countries. The initiative includes a Global Health Toolkit created by AUTM members.

Nine Points to Consider

There is increasing awareness that responsible licensing includes consideration of the needs of people in developing countries and members of other underserved populations. In keeping with this awareness, The AUTM Board of Trustees has endorsed the Nine Points to Consider in Licensing University Technology and invites your institution to do the same. The issue of global health is specifically addressed in Point 9, "Consider including provisions that address unmet needs, such as those of neglected patient populations or geographic areas, giving particular attention to improved therapeutics, diagnostics and agricultural technologies for the developing world" Read the Nine Points here and review the list of institutions that have signed on

In re Bilski

The Bilski decision is an important issue to watch due to its potential effect on business method patents. For more information, visit this blog on Bilski v. Doll: Reconsidering Patentable Subject MatterWikipedia has an extensive entry on the Bilski decision as well.

Sovereign Immunity

Sovereign Immunity is an issue that affects all those working in public institutions. The U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee considered the proposed S.2031, the Intellectual Property Protection Restoration Act of 2002. For more information on this issue, read  State Sovereign Immunity and Technology Transfer, in the AUTM Technology Transfer Practice Manual, 3rd Edition, Volume 1, Part 1, Chapter 14.3. Non–members may purchase access to the Technology Transfer Manual in the AUTM Store, or join AUTM to access this resource and more.

March-in Rights

March-in Rights are a common issue discussed within agencies and Congress from time to time. Read the U.S. Government Accountability Office's (GAO) July 2009 Report to Congressional Committees, "Information on the Government’s Right to Assert Ownership Control over Federally Funded Inventions." Full report available here.

When Essential Inventions Inc. filed petitions with the NIH in spring 2004 to invoke the march-in provisions of the Bayh-Dole Act to invalidate exclusive drug patents, AUTM mobilized and drafted a letter to the NIH. Read the full text of the letter.

Senate Finance Reform Bill

AUTM has joined nine national organizations in expressing concern about the Senate Finance Reform Bill. Read the letter co-signed by AUTM.