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Reporting an Invention

NIH scientists should promptly report their new inventions, including improvements of previously reported inventions to the Technology Transfer Specialist assigned to their Laboratory. If you do not know the name of your Specialist, please call or email us. Formal patentability assessments of the discoveries are performed by NCI TTC in conjunction with patent attorneys. Generally, a patentable invention must be something new and novel. Reportable inventions can include composition of matters, devices and methods of use. Reportable inventions also include unique biological materials with commercial applications such as transgenic mice and cell lines.
Timely reporting of new discoveries is critical because either failing to report your discovery prior to public disclosure, or submitting your EIR immediately before disclosure may result in loss of important patent property rights and could prevent your invention from being developed. In general, a “public disclosure” is the release of information about the discovery in sufficient detail to allow a fellow scientist in the field to make, use, or apply the invention to their research. Public disclosure may include:
  • Talks, presentations, seminars, posters
  • Publications, including abstracts on websites
  • Internet postings
  • Graduate student theses, job interviews
  • Discussions with non-NIH personnel without a Confidential Disclosure Agreement (CDA) in place
Monday, March 14, 2016