“Legal agreements can be anything from very basic to an extremely complex written document incorporating every conceivable safeguard,” says Kinnier Wilson. “The point of a legal agreement is to provide something that will allow those who signed it (but ultimately a court if it all goes wrong) to judge what everyone had agreed at the time – and in some cases a simpler document can do that quite well.”
“While the risks of a simple agreement are arguably higher, usually the upfront costs will be much lower,” he continues. “It’s important that spin-out companies get good legal advice on the various merits of different levels of agreement and don’t just assume that one size fits all.”
For bioscience spin-outs and start-ups, the number of legal agreements required is considerable, including agreements with shareholders, licensing arrangements, employment contracts with staff, even contracts with suppliers when buying in materials for use in the lab, and eventually the rights and obligations for clinical trials. Many of these are quite specific to the field.
With a masters in biochemical engineering, Kinnier Wilson had been planning a career in the pharmaceutical industry, but a summer job in a law firm soon changed that. Fascinated by the idea of applying his science in a different way, he qualified as a solicitor and has been working as an intellectual property specialist for nearly 20 years advising science, engineering and technology spin-out companies.
His current firm, Manches, acts on behalf of a number of research councils, research institutes and universities, advising their spin-out life science companies in all stages of development. “To offer advice, it helps to understand the technology these companies are working with,” says Kinnier Wilson. “My work brings me into contact with an amazing array of different scientific technologies. Every day is different and every day is fascinating.”
Jo Kelly | alfa
Multi-institutional collaboration uncovers how molecular machines assemble
02.12.2016 | Salk Institute
Fertilized egg cells trigger and monitor loss of sperm’s epigenetic memory
02.12.2016 | IMBA - Institut für Molekulare Biotechnologie der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften GmbH
A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.
Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...
In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.
“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...
The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.
The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...
Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water
In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...
The efficiency of power electronic systems is not solely dependent on electrical efficiency but also on weight, for example, in mobile systems. When the weight of relevant components and devices in airplanes, for instance, is reduced, fuel savings can be achieved and correspondingly greenhouse gas emissions decreased. New materials and components based on gallium nitride (GaN) can help to reduce weight and increase the efficiency. With these new materials, power electronic switches can be operated at higher switching frequency, resulting in higher power density and lower material costs.
Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE together with partners have investigated how these materials can be used to make power...
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