Baylor College of Medicine, like other employers, owns all intellectual property owned by its employees. Details are found in the Baylor Policy on Patents and Other Intellectual Property (BCM Intranet login required).
A patent serves the purpose of excluding others from utilizing the technology for a period of time to enable the inventors, or the inventors' employer (Baylor College of Medicine), or their licensees the exclusive ability to develop the invention and gain from it financially. The outcome of this exclusivity is the desire to promote and further the development of technologies.
Inventors should be aware that any public disclosure, through publication or other non-confidential presentation of the technology (including meeting abstracts, poster presentations, and seminars) made prior to filing a U.S. patent, will result in the immediate loss of foreign patent rights. The Baylor Licensing Group strives to maintain close contact with faculty members to aid in determining when they should submit a technology disclosure to BLG. This contact allows BLG to perform a preliminary evaluation of the project for its commercial potential. BLG encourages faculty members to bring forward potential technologies early in the development process. An early review will permit the protection of valuable patent rights if that is deemed necessary.
Many research tool technologies (knockout mice, antibodies, etc.) can be successfully licensed without a patent. It is not usually necessary to file a patent for biological materials when access to that biological material is controlled by the scientist. In these cases, a license agreement would prohibit transfer of the material to any other parties. Companies readily license non-patented research tools because licensing these tools saves the company the time and expense of developing a similar technology on its own. Other non-patented technologies we license include software.