Dr. Murray Spruill has combined his scientific background with extensive legal expertise to provide high-quality, patent-related legal services for his clients. Dr. Spruill is the co-leader of the firms’ Intellectual Property Patent Group and the leader of the Biotechnology, Chemical and Pharmaceutical Team. He is a thought leader and frequent author/speaker on topics dealing with biotechnology and pharmaceutical patent law and serves as co-leader of the firm's Life Sciences Task Force.
Dr. Spruill's scientific expertise includes genetics, cellular and molecular biology, biochemistry, immunology, pharmaceuticals and small molecule therapeutics. He uses this expertise in providing services relating to all areas of patent law, including patent drafting and prosecution, general patent counseling and strategic planning, patentability, freedom-to-operate opinions, validity and non-infringement opinions and licensing. His clients include large corporations, mid-sized companies, small start-ups, universities and research institutions. Dr. Spruill is listed in Best Lawyers in America in the areas of Intellectual Property and Biotechnology Law. In 2011, he earned the Raleigh-Durham Area Lawyer of the Year Award in Biotechnology Law.
- Counsel to leading biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies, providing intellectual property strategy, freedom-to-operate opinions, and validity and non-infringement opinions for their developing products.
- Counsel to a world leading seed company, developing patent portfolios around genetically modified products.
- Instrumental in securing financing ranging from $20 million to $50 million for biotechnology and pharmaceutical clients by developing their patent portfolios and intellectual property strategies and by responding to due diligence requests from investors.
- Successfully represented clients in interference proceedings before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
- Performs due diligence analysis for pharmaceutical and agricultural companies for products in different stages of development.
- Successfully opposed issued European patents.
- Successfully defended client's patents, covering a product with annual revenues over a billion dollars in reexamination proceedings.
- Built strong patent portfolios for companies involved in gene discovery and diagnostics, which contributed to successful buy-outs of the companies.
One hundred and forty-seven Alston & Bird lawyers have been selected by their peers for inclusion in the 2015 edition of The Best Lawyers In America. The lawyers span the firm’s eight U.S. offices and represent more than 60 different practice areas.
August 19, 2014
Alston & Bird’s various intellectual property groups have ranked highly in Intellectual Asset Management magazine’s recently released 2014 adjunct publication, IAM Patent 1000 – The World’s Leading Patent Professionals.
June 25, 2014
In the News
Twenty-one Alston & Bird practices have been listed in the 2014 Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business. These include Antitrust; Banking & Finance; Bankruptcy/Restructuring; Construction; Corporate/M&A; Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation; Energy; Environment; ERISA Litigation; Government: Government Relations; Healthcare; Immigration; Intellectual Property; International Trade; Labor & Employment; Litigation: General Commercial, including White-Collar and Securities Litigation; Outsourcing; Privacy & Data Security; Real Estate; REITs; and Tax.
May 23, 2014
In the News
“PTO Subject Matter Eligibility Guidance: An Ill-Advised Overextension of Myriad,” Biotechnology Law Report, June 2014.
“America Invents Act Grace Period: How Much Protection Does It Really Provide?” Intellectual Property Today, January 2014.
“Inherent Obviousness: Lessons from Allergan, Inc. v. Sandoz, Inc.,” Biotechnology Law Report, September 2013.
On Thursday, June 14, 2013, the United States Supreme Court unanimously ruled that the isolated form of naturally occurring DNA molecules does not rise to the level of patent-eligible subject matter. This advisory discusses the ruling and how it likely invalidates numerous issued patent claims directed to isolated DNA sequences.
June 17, 2013
- Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO)
- Amercian Intellectual Property Law Association (AIPLA)