The 2020 KnowIt annual event, to which The Patent Lawyer is the official media partner, is currently Livestreaming from 10 am EST until May 13. This three-day event aims to bring together the community of creators and protectors of intellectual property and other innovative outputs for an unprecedented discourse and collaboration. With dramatic shifts in both consumer and business technologies, as well as social trends and business models, now is the time for KnowIt.

For the first day of the event, May 11, a plethora of industry leaders wasted no time in getting to grips with some of the biggest issues of the day. Asking whether intellectual property is ready for the Fourth Industrial Revolution, Laura A. Coruzzi, Senior VP of Intellectual Property at REGENXBIO Inc, along with David J. Kappos, Partner at Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP, suggested that it was not, and that the US had fallen behind other jurisdictions when it came to the biopharma sector due in no small part to the Supreme Court’s decision in the Myriad Genetics case that naturally occurring human genes are not patent-eligible. Diagnostic infrastructure in the US has, they argue, been critically undermined, a state of affairs that has had a profound impact on the US’ ability to prepare for an emerging pandemic, such as the current COVID-19 outbreak.

Also under discussion was the strength (or otherwise) of the US patent system, and the fact that many companies have, in recent years, relied increasingly upon maintaining trade secrets as a partial alternative to seeking patent protection. The panel “The allure of trade secrets” discussed this in detail, with, amongst others, speakers Sheryl Falk, Partner at Winston & Strawn LLP, and Serge D. Jorgensen, Founding Partner at Sylint, emphasizing the need to maintain proper documentation as well as data security and management. One thing that emerged from this fascinating discussion was the critical importance of being able to prove harm, in terms of financial and reputational impact, in the event of trade secrets theft.

Both Day 2 and Day 3 of KnowIt begin from 10 am EST and promise a wealth of industry-leading discussion and debate. Make sure you log in at the link below.


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