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Posts Tagged: "Technology Centers"

Bioinformatics Innovations Thrive Despite 101 Chaos

Bioinformatics is a growing interdisciplinary technological field in which computing and software resources are applied to biological data and solve biological problems. For example, bioinformatics can be used to predict protein sequences through analysis of large databases of biological data to enable the development of new drug therapies. Advances in computing and software, like artificial intelligence (AI), open increasing possibilities in bioinformatics. Bioinformatics is growing rapidly—the market is predicted to exceed $16 billion by 2022. As with most growing industries, mechanisms that protect and promote innovations are key to supporting that growth. Thus, it is no surprise that the number of patent applications filed and assigned to the designated bioinformatics art unit was 40% higher in 2017 than it was in 2010. Despite this significant increase in applications, for the last five years, the subject-matter-eligibility requirement (codified as 35 U.S.C. § 101) of the U.S. patent law has been particularly vexing to applicants of computer-related inventions like bioinformatics.

Time to Disposition: Some Art Units Really Are Slower

“Time is money” rings especially true for those pursuing patents at the USPTO. Anyone who has previously dealt with this organization can attest to the fact that it is slow moving and extremely costly. Being that this single government entity is charged with processing upwards of 600,000 patent applications per year, the speed at which it operates is unsurprising. However, what is surprising is the substantial variance in speed at which each technology center and individual art unit operates. For example, technology center 2900 has the quickest average time to disposition while technology center 2400 has the slowest.