Indiana University Research and Technology Corp. among global leaders in 2015 patents

  • July 12, 2016


INDIANAPOLIS -- Indiana University Research and Technology Corp., which protects, markets and licenses intellectual property developed at Indiana University so it can be commercialized by industry, has been named among the global leaders in receiving issued U.S. patents in the 2015 calendar year.

According to the report "Top 100 Worldwide Universities Granted U.S. Utility Patents in 2015," IURTC ranks 43rd with 47 patents, tied with RAMOT at Tel Aviv University Ltd. This represents a year-over-year jump of 43 spots, as IURTC ranked 86th, with 25 issued patents, in the 2014 calendar year.

The National Academy of Inventors and the Intellectual Property Owners Association published the report. The rankings were based on data obtained from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. When a patent was assigned to more than one institution, only the first named institution was given credit for the patent. IU is a member institution of the National Academy of Inventors.

IU Vice President for Engagement Bill Stephan said patented university intellectual property can drive statewide and national economic development.

"These patented technologies can be turned into successful products and processes when organizations like IURTC license them to already-established companies or entrepreneurs who are launching a startup," he said. "They can form the foundation of small, high-tech businesses that hire talented individuals who give back to their communities, regions and states."

IURTC President and CEO Tony Armstrong said protecting and commercializing inventions discovered throughout the IU system is one of the key priorities of the university's Bicentennial Strategic Plan.

"The work conducted by Indiana University's world-class researchers in the medical fields, informatics and computing, engineering and technology, the arts and sciences, and other academic disciplines is seismic and impactful," he said. "IU inventions improve the everyday lives of people around the world, and the Bicentennial Strategic Plan outlines goals and metrics to create an even stronger environment of delivering technology to the market."

Armstrong said IU research must be protected before it is commercialized by industry and reaches the market.

"The personnel at IURTC are expert in determining the best methods to protect research, including applying for U.S. and international patents," he said. "The dramatic increase in issued patents and the corresponding global ranking are a result of this collaboration between IU researchers and IURTC technology managers."

Armstrong said the process of applying for and receiving a patent from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office can be a lengthy one.

"After a patent application has been filed, it can take between two and five years for the patent to be issued. This means IURTC personnel take a long-range view of the work being conducted and the successes we generate," he said. "This upward trend in issued U.S. patents qualifies as a success. As IU researchers continue to disclose their discoveries to IURTC, the trend could continue in 2016 and beyond as we take a long-range view."

About Indiana University Research and Technology Corp.

IURTC is a not-for-profit corporation tasked with the protecting and commercializing of technology emanating from innovations by IU researchers. Since 1997, IU research has generated more than 2,700 inventions resulting in over 3,900 global patent applications being filed by IURTC. These discoveries have generated $133 million in licensing and royalty income, including $111 million in funding for IU departments, labs and inventors.