Cotton Mouton Diagnostics (CMD) was set up to commercialise innovations in the field of Point of Care (PoC) diagnostics. The core technology is based on an innovative technology involving a magneto-optical sensing system. The technology was originally developed at the University of Exeter as a diagnostic for malaria but the device that has been developed has much wider generic application. The goal with this technology is to develop a generic, multi-analyte, fit-for-purpose PoC platform for use in a wide number of different diagnostic tests. Our patent attorney and partner, Dr Ian Lambert, works for both the University of Exeter and Cardiff University. Initially working for Exeter, he was responsible for drafting and obtaining patents on the malaria and PoC technologies.
Ian is very commercially focused and ensured that the IP strategy was linked to business goals. He provided sound commercial understanding at initial steps of the patent prosecution process which involved managing conflicting pressures to optimise the future value of the patent portfolio. For example, he worked within budget constraints and time pressure to provide the basis of a commercial patent portfolio by filing appropriate patent application before various grant proposals were submitted (although the grant proposals are supposedly confidential, a commercial decision was taken not to risk IP leakage prior to filing appropriate patent applications). Filing strategies were devised to maximise the value of the patent portfolio within budget constraints. When CMD was established, Ian’s background with the University of Exeter portfolio (which has since been assigned to CMD) and his relationship with Cardiff University helped to secure him the role of overseeing CMD’s patent interests, for which he was very grateful. Ian works closely with CMD’s top management and the technical team and is appreciative of the excellent working relationship. CMD have been able to secure investment for their technology and the quality of the IP portfolio played a key role. Ian has also advised them on freedom to operate and infringement issues.