Douglas Drysdale


Douglas acts for a broad range of clients within the life sciences and chemical fields. His clients benefit from his candid, pragmatic and commercially-focused advice. Notable clients include major global life science, medical device and chemical companies, and many growing SMEs. He has a particularly strong reputation with the university sector, having acted for several top-tier universities in protecting and enforcing IP, and also in negotiating commercial agreements and resolving contentious matters. He is also highly experienced in oppositions and appeals before the European Patent Office. 

Particular areas of focus of Douglas’s practice include genetic engineering (including gene editing), synthetic biology, gene therapy, industrial biotechnology, biological therapies and antibodies, diagnostics (including biomarkers and imaging technologies), personalised medicine and medical devices.  In addition to developing and implementing global patent filing and prosecution strategies, Douglas regularly advises on infringement matters, including complex freedom to operate and enforcement issues across multiple jurisdictions. These matters often involve contentious proceedings, and Douglas frequently attends the EPO in Munich and The Hague to represent clients in oral proceedings.

Having obtained a first-class honours degree in Molecular Biology from the University of Aberdeen, Scotland, Douglas decided to pursue a career as a patent attorney. He then completed the MSc in the Management of Intellectual Property Law at Queen Mary College, University of London.

Douglas joined HGF in 2011 from another Scottish-based international IP firm where he began his career, having risen rapidly there to the role of Director. During this time he qualified as UK and European Patent Attorney in record time and built up a strong reputation within the profession. For several years, Douglas served on the Examination Committee for the European Qualification Examination, which assesses candidates for qualification as European Patent Attorneys. Through this Douglas contributed to the future of the profession, and enjoyed working with key figures in EPO Opposition Divisions.