The America Invents Act:

Changes in the Patent Laws of Special Interest to the Life Sciences Industry

November 4, 2011

After several years of unsuccessful attempts, Congress recently passed the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (the ‘‘AIA’’),1 containing the most significant changes to the Patent Act in more than 60 years. President Obama signed the AIA into law on Sept. 16.2 This article presents an overview of the major provisions that are significant for practitioners in the life sciences.3

1 H.R. 1249 (112th Congress).
2 Pub. L. No. 112-29.
3 The authors recognize that there is no monolithic ‘‘life sciences industry’’ that speaks with one voice on all issues, but instead use this term to address views that may be common or shared among individuals and entities advancing or using technologies in the biomedical or biotechnological sciences.

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Brian Wells

Matthew McFarlane

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