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Patent Information

Intellectual Property

Disclose and Invention

If you think you have an innovation or discovery that has commercial potential, contact us. We are eager to discuss the possibilities.

When to disclose: Disclose your invention as soon as practicable but before you have presented it at any public forum including conferences and poster sessions and before it is published in any form including as an abstract or journal article. A publication or presentation can impact the legal status of your future patent.

Not sure if your invention has commercial potential? Talk to us to discuss your invention.

To disclose an invention, you will need the following information:

·         Inventorship: List yourself and your co-inventors. Start by listing any major contributors including when appropriate post-doctoral researchers, graduate students, undergraduate students and colleagues at other institutions. A patent attorney will make the final determination of inventorship under U.S. patent law.

·        Sponsorship: Supply all contract numbers for any government, corporate or foundation support. Completing this form fulfills your responsibility of reporting the invention to government, foundation and corporate sponsors.

·           Publications, Oral Presentations, Poster Sessions, Web Postings: Provide key dates of any past or future disclosures of the technology. Filing a patent after publication will potentially impact your intellectual property rights. If you have questions, talk to us.

·         References: To the extent possible, include copies of any publications by you or your co-inventors relative to this invention.  Include rough or first drafts of papers, experimental data sheets, and preprints.

MTAs, CDAs and Other Agreements

Inventors who consider their work to be patentable should consult our office when presented with legal agreements relevant to their inventions. Among the legal forms we can help you with, the two most common are Material Transfer Agreements and Confidentiality Disclosure Agreements.

Material Transfer Agreements

University research projects often involve sharing samples and reagents with colleagues at other educational institutions and companies. SPST supports the transfer of materials. Often no formal agreement is required when sharing materials with academic colleagues. However, there are times when it is important to protect intellectual property rights by executing a Material Transfer Agreement (MTA).

MTAs are legal documents describing the rights and responsibilities of parties that are exchanging materials such as laboratory reagents, tissue specimens, prototypes and other items. An MTA covers issues such as ownership, publication, intellectual property, permitted use and liability. We urge inventors to contact us for advice on whether an MTA is appropriate for your project.

Confidentiality Disclosure Agreements (CDAs)

There are times in a research collaboration where you may be asked to sign a confidentiality agreement. These agreements can be for one-way disclosures of information from a party to you, one way from you to a third party, or for the mutual exchange of information between the party. Additionally, to protect your potential patent rights, you must keep confidential any inventions and discoveries with commercial potential prior to filing for patent protection. If you are either presented with such a document or you feel it may be important to protect your research from further disclosure, please contact us for assistance.


Prof. Matthias Bureik

School of Pharmaceutical Science and Technology (SPST)

Tianjin University, Building 24, Room 506B

92 Weijin Road, Nankai District

Tianjin, 300072

P.R. China


Dr. Youxin Li

School of Pharmaceutical Science and Technology (SPST)

Tianjin University, Building 24, Room A606

92 Weijin Road, Nankai District

Tianjin, 300072

P.R. China