IP in Healthcare Conference 2018

March 2018

London and Manchester

Join us for the latest updates on intellectual property issues in the pharmaceutical, life science, and medical device fields at HGF's fourth annual IP in Healthcare Conference.

Tuesday 20th March

The Wellcome Trust, 183 Euston Road, London, NW1 2BE

Tuesday 27th March

Alderley Park, Congleton Road, Nether Alderely, Macclesfield, SK10 4TG

Registration from 09.00. Last session finishes at 13.30 followed by lunch.


To register please email Liz Davies , call +44(0) 133 233 0189 or complete the form at the end of the page.


To view the full programme please click here.

Sessions will include:

IP due diligence - are you ready to be investigated?

The development and commercialisation of innovations in the healthcare sector is increasingly achieved through collaboration, licensing and acquisition. In many cases the intellectual property of a healthcare company or research institution will be the company’s most valuable asset and is often subject to intense scrutiny during due diligence. Potential problems identified during IP due diligence can affect the value placed on an asset, or worse, lead to collapse of negotiations.

This presentation will explore some of the common issues that arise in IP due diligence and how to avoid them, what steps companies can take to prepare for IP due diligence  and how to handle the questions posed by third parties during due diligence. Dr Andrew Wells and Mike Nelson

UK Supreme Court reformulates patent infringement test

In a landmark case, the UK Supreme Court has altered the English Patents Court’s approach to assessing patent infringement, scope of protection and equivalents. This session is relevant to anyone looking to draft, enforce or revoke patents in the UK. We will examine the new test for patent infringement as set down by the Supreme Court and some of the issues this has already created in the latest judgments from the Patents Court. Hsu Min Chung and Dr Bal Matharu

Best practice for Trade Mark & Design registrations to maximise protection and success

Healthcare packaging and medical device design can add significant brand value and can become very valuable pieces of intellectual property. They may also have broader application and a longer life span than patent protection.

Design registrations are an inexpensive form of IP protection. This should not mean that care should not be taken when deciding what should be protected and how it should be protected. Having a well thought through design strategy can significantly increase the value of your registrations. In this practical session, we will look at real-life examples in your industry to show how best to represent design images to get the best protection. We will also consider what residual protection is provided by unregistered rights.

In addition to design protection, registered trade marks for packing and the shape of products can be very valuable rights. However, trade mark applications in the healthcare sector often attract objections from examiners based on being “descriptive” and “non- distinctive”.  We will share our practical experiences in these matters to demonstrate how these objections can be successfully overcome in respect of both shape and word mark applications. Martyn Fish and Dr Dominic Murphy

IP strategy and process considersations for healthcare companies

Research and development is costly, and the costs of drug development are increasing year on year. Aside from the composition of matter patent, what opportunities are there to maximise the market exclusivity period to recoup this investment?

Establishing a patent strategy that governs the processes for the identification, protection and defence of new inventions and for ensuring freedom to operate is essential. Putting the patient first by constantly seeking new enhancements to your development candidate may yield additional patentable subject matter.

This discussion will focus on strategies and processes that may be useful to both large  Pharma and SMEs, identifying possible tactics to put you in the best position to defend your product. We will address issues such as invention harvesting, when to file, patent searching, what data is needed, territorial scope and prosecution strategies for different scenarios. We will compare a theoretical basic market exclusivity profile with that of an enhanced market exclusivity profile and give some examples of products that have benefitted from lifecycle management opportunities. Dr Laurence Gainey and Kieran Killough

Brain-tech and biolectronics

Imagine a future where we can use bioelectronic components to reverse paralysis, to reverse blindness or to restore memories lost to Alzheimer’s disease. If this seems far-fetched, then think again. Leading multinational companies such as ARM, GSK and Google are currently active in research in the bioelectronics area and are making exciting progress.

We shall provide an overview of cutting-edge bioelectronics innovations including applications of electronics to medicine to read and modify electrical signals of the body’s nerves, not just in the brain but in other parts of the body. Electrical stimulation to target specific groups of neurons has the potential to lead to bioelectronic treatments for medical conditions as diverse as arthritis, asthma and hypertension.

Identifying the patentable aspects of bioelectronics inventions can present challenges due to the requirement to demonstrate that the innovations are not subject to legal exclusions preventing patenting of certain methods of medical treatment and diagnosis and certain types of computer program. We shall provide guidance for identifying viable patentable inventions in this field and we consider how cost-efficiency can be achieved by keeping a firm focus, from the invention harvesting stage onwards, on how the resulting patent applications might be used as commercial tools. Dr Susan Keston and Douglas Drysdale

Heal the World - access to medicines in developing countries

It is 8 years since the Access to Medicines Foundation published its first biennial review of world’s 20 largest pharmaceutical countries ability to make their drugs more available, affordable, accessible and acceptable in low- to middle-income countries. Progress has been made. This session will explore various contractual mechanisms available to ensure that successful projects deliver healthcare benefit to those in need. The session will reflect on obligations around pricing, diligence, and IP – and some of the challenges in defining, agreeing and enforcing these terms. Janet Knowles and Dr Julie Hutson and Katherine Anastasi-Frankovics from The Wellcome Trust

Gearing up - are you ready for pharma partnering?

Whether you are a start-up seeking early financing or a mature company looking to partner with big pharma, prospective investors will scrutinise your IP assets to ensure they are making a safe investment. Ed Gates and Kate Taylor will explore the key considerations for those wanting to ensure their IP is an attractive proposition and favourably position themselves in advance of investor due diligence.  Kate Taylor and Edward Gates from Wolf Greenfield

To view the full programme please click here.  For more information about the conference please email Liz Davies or call +44(0) 133 233 0189.


Registration Form

IP in Healthcare 2018 - Registration Form

To register please complete the form below


About HGF's Healthcare Team

HGF is one of Europe's largest firms of intellectual property specialists with 15 offices across the UK and mainland Europe. The firm's patent attorneys, trade mark attorneys and IP solicitors provide an integrated IP solution for clients.

HGF's Healthcare Team provides professional expertise and commercially focused advise to business leaders and decision makers in the healthcare fields of life sciences, pharmaceuticals and medical devices. HGF has in-depth knowledge of the sector, and the experience to provide you with advice in relation to the protection of your IP rights. For more information about the Healthcare Team please click here.