Midas IP Services: Your compass through the international patent landscape
The IP Management department supports Midas internal clients as well as external customers in all questions of Intellectual Property. The IP Management-Team at Midas Pharma specializes in patents in the pharmaceutical sector and has in-depth expertise in the fields of chemistry, biotechnology, pharmaceuticals and medicine. Dr. Christian Drescher is a professional representative before the European Patent Office and heads the department since 2011. He also has more than 20 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry.
Dr. Christian Drescher
European Patent Attorney, Director IP Management
“Patent law is both a hurdle and an opportunity. For years, we have been successfully supporting our clients in navigating through the international patent landscape.”
- Why are patents so important in the pharmaceutical industry?
Intellectual property plays a particular important role because the development of most pharmaceutical products is connected with considerable investments (hundreds of thousands of Euros) and patents are the predominant tool to achieve an adequate financial compensation.
- What are the main activities for the IP-Management at Midas?
The majority of our activities are connected to the support of the product development activities at Midas (e.g. the development of active pharmaceutical Ingredients (APIs)).
In addition, we are engaged in the evaluation of new product ideas and innovation management, e.g. the assessment of patent and technology portfolios.
- Which are typical activities in the course / different stages of a product development at Midas?
In the evaluation phase, we provide an overview about all principal exclusivities relating to the respective product and indicate whether there are pathways that are blocked by existing patents of the competitors and elaborate suitable work-around solutions. This is often referred to as “Freedom to operate (FTO) Analysis”.
In the development phase, we continue to monitor the patent landscape and evaluate whether changes may affect the technical product development.
If a patentable invention is made during the development - which is often the case - we also draft own patent applications and file them at the Patent Offices.
In the launch phase, IP management may support the market entry of a product by challenging disruptive third parties’ patents.
- Can you provide an example of successful patent/technology portfolio management?
Recently we were asked to optimize the patent portfolio relating to an ongoing product. In particular, we were asked to cut down the patenting costs but maintain a strong protection. This was achieved by a thorough portfolio analysis and optimization including the following activities:
- Abandonment of applications that did not protect the current prototype
- Abandonment of applications with questionable validity and/or low protective effect, as well as applications in countries of lesser importance
- Coordination and streamlining of the proceedings and takeover the certain representations.
- Elaboration and filing of new patent applications
As a result, the patenting costs could be reduced by more than 50% without a significant reduction of the protection.