By patenting their innovations, our clients increase the value of their intellectual property and enhance their ability to compete in the marketplace. We work with individual scientists and engineers, laboratory and research teams, and R&D and product development groups to determine whether, when and where it is in our clients' business and technical interests to seek patent protection. And we don't just file patent applications. Drawing on our experience with patent litigation, corporate financings and technology transactions, we implement IP strategies that conserve resources, add measurable value and give our clients a cost-effective and commercially practical competitive edge.

In 2014 alone, we filed nearly 2,000 US and foreign patent applications and obtained more than 600 US and foreign patents for our clients, covering innovations that span the technological spectrum, including aerospace, biochemistry, biotechnology, business methods, chemistry, computer science, fuel cells, genetics, high speed data communication, integrated circuits, materials science, medical devices, nanotechnology, pharmaceuticals, semiconductor devices/processes, and software. We also prepare and prosecute patent applications internationally—under the Patent Cooperative Treaty and in working with a network of seasoned patent lawyers around the world. Our experience extends to appeals, interferences and opposition proceedings within the USPTO, the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and the European Patent Office. 


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Steinberg, Donald R.

Donald R. Steinberg

Chair, Intellectual Property Department

+1 617 526 6453 (t)

Haag, Joseph F.

Joseph F. Haag

Vice Chair, Intellectual Property Department

+1 650 858 6032 (t)


In recent matters, we:

  • Filed and obtained patents covering methods of treatment using NitroMed's commercial drug product, BiDil®—which is targeted to the treatment of heart failure in black patients—and worked with the company on the implementation of strategies for product life cycle management
  • Prosecuted a large and complex family of US and foreign patents for Wyeth and its licensee XCyte, concerning an anti-cancer immunotherapy that is currently in Phase III clinical trials
  • Represented Columbia University in the negotiation of several intellectual property licenses, and in patent prosecution relating to diverse fields such as software applications, integrated circuits, life sciences, chemistry and physical sciences

Publications & News


September 14, 2016

LMG Life Sciences Recognizes WilmerHale in Multiple Categories on 2016 Award Shortlist

In its annual recognition of the top law firms, lawyers and in-house counsel in the life sciences industry, LMG Life Sciences named WilmerHale to its 2016 award shortlist. 

August 25, 2016

PTAB's 1st Preliminary Reply And Surreply Under New Rules

In this article published by Law360, Monica Grewal and Michael H. Smith discuss the most recent Patent Trial and Appeals Board rule changes and outline cases that illustrate some of the factors petitioners should consider when requesting leave to file preliminary reply.

July 6, 2016

Trends in Inter Partes Review of Life Sciences Patents

Bloomberg BNA's Patent, Trademark & Copyright Journal published an article written by Monica Grewal, James Hill and Kathryn Zalewski, which provides a statistical analysis of inter partes review proceedings before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board and shows that it is not a ''death squad'' for patents.

June 22, 2016

The Legal 500 United States 2016 Recognizes 111 WilmerHale Lawyers Across 30 Practice Areas

The guide's rankings are based on a series of criteria, including client feedback, interviews with private practice lawyers, and its own research.

June 20, 2016

How the PTAB Treats Pre-Institution Factual Disputes

An article by Don Steinberg and Michael Smith, published in BNA's Patent, Trademark & Copyright Journal, explores how PTAB panels have addressed pre-institution factual disputes and the potential impact of the PTAB's recent rule changes.

May 27, 2016

WilmerHale Lawyers and Practices Recognized in 2016 Edition of Chambers USA

Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business announced its final rankings for the 2016 edition, with WilmerHale ranking among the nation's best in 47 practice area categories. Chambers also ranked 82 WilmerHale lawyers as leaders in their respective fields.

May 23, 2016

Federalizing Trade Secret Protection: A Close Look at the Ex Parte Seizure Provision

In this article published by Corporate Counsel in May 2016, James Dowd, Greg Lantier and Rachel Weiner Cohen provide a high-level overview of the reach and effect of the newly passed Defend Trade Secrets Act on plaintiffs, defendants and third-party bystanders.

May 17, 2016

WilmerHale Attorneys and Practices Recognized in 2016 edition of IP Stars Handbook

The fourth edition of the IP Stars Handbook—a Managing IP guide that identifies the leading IP firms and lawyers in the United States—has been released and it prominently ranks WilmerHale and 19 of its partners.

April 28, 2016

Broadest Reasonable Interpretation and Claim Amendments in Post-Grant Patent Challenges

Monica Grewal and Michael Smith, in an article published in the American Constitution Society's blog, discuss the recent debate over whether the Patent Office should apply BRI or Phillips constructions in post-grant proceedings.

April 7, 2016

Bill Lee and Co-Author Doug Melamed Honored with Academic Article Award at 2016 Antitrust Writing Awards

Bill Lee and his co-author Douglas Melamed were the recipients of an Academic Article Award for their article, "Breaking the Vicious Cycle of Patent Damages," which Cornell Law Review published last year.

Patent Certiorari Petitions

WilmerHale compiles lists of certiorari petitions that raise patent-law issues. This page contains a consolidated list of all recently pending, granted and denied petitions, organized in each listing in reverse chronological order by date of certiorari petition.

Patent Law and the Supreme Court: Certiorari Petitions Pending

Patent Law and the Supreme Court: Certiorari Petitions Granted

Patent Law and the Supreme Court: Certiorari Petitions Denied

For more information on these petitions or other patent appeal matters, contact:

Joseph J. Mueller (+1 617 526 6396,
Thomas G. Saunders (+1 202 663 6536,
Leslie Pearlson (+1 617 526 6809,