Stephen E. Zweig

Stephen E. Zweig

Experienced PhD JD patent attorney
  • Patents, Trademarks, Intellectual Property
  • California, USPTO patent bar (Federal Jurisdiction)
Claimed Lawyer ProfileQ&ASocial Media

Experienced patent attorney with a strong technical background, over 250+ issued patents, and many trademarks.

In addition to my legal background, I have a Biophysics STEM background (PhD) and experience with medical devices, software, electronics, and biotech. I have a lot of experience with startups, due diligence, and litigation support.

William Howard Taft University
J.D. (2011) | Law School
Honors: Graduated with Honors
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University of California - San Diego
Ph.D. (1980) | Biophysics - Biology
Studied how cell membranes work using techniques from biophysics, immunochemistry, and protein chemistry, with focus on red cell maturation during erythropoiesis. Also studied protein chemistry of myosin heavy chain isozymes.
Activities: Worked under John Singer, discoverer of the fluid mosaic model of cell membranes, now taught in every biology textbook.
University of California - San Diego Logo
University of California - Santa Barbara
B.A. (1974) | Physics, Biology
Double major in Physics and Biology, with additional courses in Computer Science and Electrical Engineering.
University of California - Santa Barbara Logo
Professional Experience
Owner (Solo Practice)
PatentAssociate - Stephen E. Zweig, PhD JD, Patent Attorney
- Current
IP attorney with an emphasis on patent drafting and prosecution, as well as trademarks. I handle a broad range of topics, from simple to complex, but I particularly like technically difficult and interdisciplinary (electronics-software or medical device-biotech) cases.
Medical device and IP strategic advisor
CliniSense Corp.
Ran consulting company focusing on Intellectual Property (patents), and medical devices for Beckman-Coulter and other firms. Among other work, developed a new type of electronic stability monitoring technology (LifeTrack®) to detect deteriorated drugs, vaccines, medical supplies, and other materials.
Founder, Chairman and CTO
Avocet Medical, Inc.
Founded VC backed medical diagnostics company that produced a point-of-care home diagnostic test for anticoagulants (warfarin, Coumadin). CEO 1991-96, Chairman and CTO 1997-2001. Ran R&D, Engineering, and Intellectual Property departments. The product was FDA cleared, and is still marketed as the Acon Laboratories, Inc. "Mission PT Coagulation Monitoring System"
Director R&D and Operations
LifeScan, a Johnson and Johnson Company
Headed up the R&D/operations department that scaled up the "One-Touch", which was the first highly successful blood glucose test strip for diabetes (sales approached nearly a billion dollars a year). After the One-Touch was launched, headed up the R&D team that did the initial R&D for the successful "SureStep" diabetes test strip system.
Articles & Publications
Advances in vaccine stability monitoring technology
Mobile robotic system with web server and digital radio links
USPTO patent 6,658,325
Verification device for optical clinical assay systems
USPTO patent 6,061,128
Membrane-based dry-reagent prothrombin time tests
Biomed. Instrum. Tech.
Best research paper of 1997
American Association of Biomedical Instrumentation (AAMI)
SBIR Phase I and II award
National Institutes of Health
Postdoctoral Fellow
Arthritis Foundation
Professional Associations
American Bar Association  # 02064556
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Jurisdictions Admitted to Practice
State Bar of California
ID Number: 283095
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USPTO patent bar (Federal Jurisdiction)
ID Number: 60144
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Practice Areas
Patent Prosecution
Trademark Registration
Intellectual Property
Legal Answers
Q. Could I develop a video game using the story and characters from "The Little Prince" and sell it in the US?
A: Not yet. According to a quick search of copyright law. Copyrights last a long time, often 95 years from the publication date. In this case, "The Little Prince" will become public domain in the US in 2039.

So, come back in 15 years.
Q. Do you have to mark the patent number on the product packaging or website?
A: This is covered by Federal law 35 USC 287.

The law limits the patent holder's ability to recover for past patent infringement damages to the first point in time when the infringer was notified about the patent. By contrast, by marking the product, the infringer is legally assumed to have notice as of the time the patent holder first started marking the product.

So this can make a big difference in patent damages. Say an infringer had been infringing your patent for the last three years, but you had never marked your patent product with the patent number. Then you discover the problem and send the infringer a notification letter. The infringer only owes damages from the time of your letter, and not the previous three years. ... Read More
Q. Life sciences patent lawyer Q: can I patent modified protein production protocol never used for this protein but others
A: A lot will depend on whether your modified protocol is legally "obvious" or not. Here, the legal question is if the modification would appear apparent to a person of average skill in the art (here, "average skill" in biotech is Ph.D. level).

If you did something unusual or obtained unexpectedly good results, this would be an argument favoring non-obviousness. On the other hand, if the examiner can look at other prior-art protein production protocols and show that your modified method employs techniques that the examiner can find in these prior art methods, then this would be an argument against patentability.

Other arguments, such as opinions of experts in your field and possibly commercial success, may also be a factor. ... Read More
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Social Media
Websites & Blogs
PatentAssociate IP Blog
Contact & Map
15466 Los Gatos Blvd., 109-355
Los Gatos, CA 95032
Telephone: (408) 348-1495
Monday: 8 AM - 5 PM
Tuesday: 8 AM - 5 PM
Wednesday: 8 AM - 5 PM
Thursday: 8 AM - 5 PM
Friday: 8 AM - 5 AM
Saturday: 8 AM - 5 PM
Sunday: 8 AM - 5 PM (Today)
Notice: Although I prefer to talk during weekday business hours, I am available for rush or emergency discussions during weekends and off-hours as well.