Heather M. Petruzzi


Petruzzi, Heather M.

Heather M. Petruzzi is a partner who focuses her practice on complex intellectual property matters for life sciences and medical device clients. Ms. Petruzzi represents clients before the USPTO, in district courts and at the Federal Circuit.

Ms. Petruzzi represents clients across a variety of technologies in strategic post-grant proceedings before the USPTO, including inter partes review and ex parte reexaminations. She also prosecutes strategic patent portfolios for startup and large companies.

Ms. Petruzzi counsels clients on freedom to operate matters and drafts invalidity and non-infringement opinions. She also counsels clients on licensing issues, IP sales and acquisitions, and performs due diligence analyses.

In addition, Ms. Petruzzi represents pharmaceutical companies in ANDA litigation and medical device clients in district court. She handles pre-litigation investigations, discovery, claim construction, expert discovery, expert reports and depositions. She has experience coordinating global litigation and foreign opposition strategies for both pharmaceutical and medical device clients. She also drafts briefs and prepares for oral argument before the Federal Circuit in appeals from the district court and the USPTO.


During law school, Ms. Petruzzi completed legal internships for the National Nuclear Security Administration, the Office of the Attorney General for Washington, DC and a real estate attorney in New Jersey. Representative experience includes performing legal research and writing regarding nuclear nonproliferation issues and nuclear weapons for the Department of Energy, assisting in civil litigation and drafting client letters.

During her undergraduate studies, Ms. Petruzzi was a research assistant in the Chemistry Department at The University of Richmond. She presented and contributed to the publication of laboratory research focused on the synthesis of compounds for their application as anti-tumor agents. Ms. Petruzzi also presented her senior project on the Yucca Mountain Project and the transportation of nuclear waste in water-saturated tuff. She was awarded the American Chemical Society Analytical Chemistry Award for her studies.

Ms. Petruzzi has also written and presented on the European Union and the use of democracy to promote stability. She interned for the International Hospital for Children in 2004, translating documents and conversations for patients from Latin America as they sought medical treatment in the United States.

Community Involvement

Since joining WilmerHale, Ms. Petruzzi has tutored with the Maya Angelou Public Charter School and co-organized a community service day sponsored by DC Cares.

Ms. Petruzzi is a member of the American Bar Association, American Intellectual Property Law Association and Women in Bio.

Publications & News


January 2, 2018

WilmerHale Announces 2018 Partner Elevations

We are pleased to announce the elevation of our new partners.

January 17, 2017

Four Factors Influencing Enhanced Damages After Halo

In this article published by Law360, Donald Steinberg, Heather Petruzzi and Margareta Sorenson consider district court decisions on enhanced damages issued within the first six months after Halo, particularly focusing on the factors that influence whether enhanced damages are ultimately awarded.

October 8, 2014

Becton Dickinson Receives Successful Inter Partes Review Decision

On September 25, 2014, WilmerHale client, Becton, Dickinson and Company (BD), earned a significant victory in an Inter Partes Review (IPR) before the US Patent Office's Patent Trial and Appeal Board (Board) in the form of a Final Written Decision declaring unpatentable all challenged claims of US Pat. No. 5,704,914 (the '914 patent).

September 12, 2014

When Inter Partes Review Meets Hatch-Waxman Patents

An article by Christopher Noyes, Emily Whelan, Corinne Atton and Heather Petruzzi, published by Law360 as part of a series of articles authored by the firm on the topic of post-grant proceedings.

January 23, 2014

US Supreme Court Holds That a Patentee Bears the Burden of Persuasion on the Issue of Infringement in a Declaratory Judgment Action

The US Supreme Court unanimously reversed a decision of the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and held that the patentee bears the burden of persuasion on the issue of patent infringement in a declaratory judgment action brought by a licensee.

September 13, 2013

New Post-Grant Patent Proceedings Exceeding Expectations

September 16 marks the second anniversary of the America Invents Act, which brought about the most significant changes in US patent laws in more than 50 years. One very significant change was the introduction of three new post-grant patent proceedings that permit third parties to challenge the validity of a patent in the US Patent and Trademark Office.

July 1, 2011

DC Bar Honors WilmerHale with 2011 Frederick B. Abramson Award

December 9, 2009

USPTO to Accelerate Green Technology Patents

January 1, 2007

The Missing Link: The Need for Patent Protection in the Development of Biodefense Vaccines

An article written by Heather Petruzzi, 37 Pub. Cont. L. J. 71 (2007).

January 1, 2005

Reactions of (Z)-3-aryl-3-chloropropenals with nucleophiles: Stereoselective formation of (E)-vinylogous esters, (E)-vinylogous amides, and vinamidinium salts

Stuart Clough et al., 61 Tetrehedron 7554 (2005).


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JD, with high honors, George Washington University Law School, 2008, Order of the Coif; Public Contracts Law Journal, Moot Court Board

BS, Chemistry/International Studies/Spanish, summa cum laude, University of Richmond, 2005, Phi Beta Kappa

Bar Admissions

District of Columbia

New York



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