Recognizing the importance of protecting the intellectual properties (IP) generated from research and development activities of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), the Innovation and Technology Support Office (ITSO) of the Technology Application and Promotion Institute (TAPI) focused this year’s IP support to the seven DOST-RDIs namely the Advanced Science and Technology Institute (ASTI), Food and Nutrition Research Institute (FNRI), Forest Products Research and Development Institute (FPRDI), Industrial Technology Development Institute (ITDI), Metals Research and Development Center (MIRDC), Philippine Nuclear Research Institute (PNRI), and Philippine Textile Research Institute (PTRI).
Several activities were conducted to encourage these institutions to protect their assets from infringement and boost their IP portfolio. Kicking off the search for DOST technologies was an IP audit conducted in August and September 2019. The DOST 500 project team visited all the RDIs and was welcomed by each agency’s technology transfer officers. During the audit, they discussed the assistance offered and looked for R&D outputs that will be subjected to IP protection.
ITSO has also conducted a Consultancy Meeting on Basic Intellectual Property and Invention Disclosure to guide the RDIs and their researcherson how to disclose the details of their technologies for patent drafting. The first batch was attended by the researchers and technology transfer officers from ASTI and PNRI lastDecember 17 to 19, 2019 at Holiday Inn Suites, Makati City. Similarly, researchers andtechnology licensing officers from FNRI, FPRDI, ITDI, MIRDC and PTRIactively participated in the second batch of the consultancy meeting onJanuary 23, 2020,at TAPI-AVR. Both sessions were facilitated by the IP Lawyer, Atty. Bayani B. Loste of FortunNarvasa & Salazar. During the event, Atty. Marion Ivy D. Decena, Invention Development Division Chief stressed out to the attendees that “Whether the technologies that are products of R&D are for commercialization or otherwise, DOST-TAPI encourages the filing for IP protection”. She expressed the importance of IP in safeguarding the technologies from infringement and in safeguarding their institutions in case a third party decides to copy the technology and file IP protection.
Going the extra mile in IP protection, some of the RDIs filed Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) applications through TAPI’s assistance. PCT application is one of the steps in securing patent protection abroad. Following this is the National Phase Entry (NPE) application where the applicants select countries and file the patent.
This year, PNRI has filed two international applications for A Carboxymethyl Hyaluronic Hydrogels Prepared by Gamma-Irradiation. The agency is now expected to file the NPE application to countries where their products will be commercialized. Likewise, ITDI stepped up to the challenge of commercializing DOST technologies abroad. To protect their product from possible infringement, the agency requested TAPI for assistance to file an international application for two of their inventions.
The declaration of the enhanced community quarantine forced workforces to stay at home. Despite this, ITSO continues its services to the RDIs as series of follow-ups, evaluations, consultations and IP filings are being conducted while working offsite. Meetings were held online and submissions shifted to the digital platform. Knowing that intellectual property is a race, ITSO commits to race together with the RDIs in providing patent, utility model, industrial design, trademark, copyright, PCT, and NPE assistance.
FRANCE ALMIRA CRISTOBAL
JONNEL MATTHEW GULLABA