Martin MacLean

UK & European Patent Attorney

Martin is a Chartered Patent Attorney and European Patent Attorney. Chambers ranks Martin as a Band 1 Patent Attorney and as a ‘key individual’ for biochemistry and biotechnology patents. He is described by one source as being "very knowledgeable, very alert to client requirements and creative in finding solutions to problems” (2015). In previous editions, he is praised as being a "very skilled patent attorney" who "doesn't just provide an off-the-shelf solution” (2014). It also describes him as being “diligent and proactive and provides excellent strategic advice” (2011) and "relaxed, personable and approachable" (2012). The most recent sources have advised that he "thinks creatively about how to achieve our solutions" and is "service-minded, knowledgeable and on the ball" (2016). Martin also comes highly recommended by Legal 500 (2012). Martin is recommended in the 2015 Legal 500 Directory and is described as being “knowledgeable” and “flexible”. It is also noted that 'the highly regarded Martin MacLean advised new client Public Health England on a number of global patent grants and filing strategy matters'. Martin has been nominated by peers as one of the world's leading practitioners in the field of patents in the 2016, 2017 and 2018 edition of Who's Who Legal: Patents. Martin has also been ranked in the latest edition of IAM Strategy 300 – The World’s Leading IP Strategists 2017. Legal 500 (2017) notes that Martin has ‘a good breadth of knowledge in the life sciences field’, ‘a deep understanding of the law and the procedures at the EPO’, and ‘excellent track record of handling very difficult cases’. 


Year joined:1999

Qualifications:BSc MSc PhD CPA EPA


Martin’s principal practice areas include; drafting and global prosecution, defence and opposition, freedom-to-operate and strategic advice. In this regard, Martin has extensive experience in the conduct of hearings before the European Patent Office, having conducted over 100 hearings. Martin specialises in technologies such as the re-targeting of bacterial toxins, vaccines, expression systems, microbial detection assays, cytokine-based therapeutics, and agrochemicals, and represents clients ranging from UK Government and blue chip biotech companies through to spin-outs and start-ups. 


Martin has a strong background in biochemistry and biotechnology, having obtained a first degree (Warwick University) in microbial technology and a PhD (Warwick University) for research conducted into the biochemical aspects of acidophilic bacteria. He also has a master's degree in IP from the University of London.

He acts as a tutor for the UK and European qualifying examinations. He also serves as a lecturer and clinician for the Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys.

Membership & Organisations

Martin is a member of the Life Sciences Committee for the Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys.

IAM 300 2018 logo

Recent Work

Martin has presented on the challenges of stem cell patentability in Europe and provided practical advice on how to obtain commercially-relevant patents in this technical field.  A link to the full presentation is provided below.

European and US Patent Strategies for Cell Therapies


Key hearings

  • “HIV peptides” (Adaltis, Abbott Lab, United Biomedical, Institut Pasteur, Bio-Rad Pasteur)
  • “Factor XIII” (Novo Nordisk, Baxter, Aventis Behring)
  • “TACI” (ZymoGenetics, Corixa, HGS)
  • “Omega-3” (Martek Biosciences, Nagase Biochem, Aventis R&T, OmegaTech, Monsanto)
  • "Stomach-action molluscicides" (Young, W.Neudorff GmbH)
  • "Pesticidal compositions" (W.Neudorff GmbH, Bayer CropScience AG)
  • "Aqueous pesticide formulations" (Monsanto, Nufarm Australia Limited, Rhodia Operations)
  • "RNase ÎĄ detection of pathogenic organisms" (Herrmann; MacLean)
  • "Detection of microbial residues" (DSM IP Assets, Charm Sciences)
  • "One-step detection of antimicrobial residues" (DSM IP Assets, Charm Sciences)
  • "Clonal virus therapeutics" (Wellstat Biologics, Bayer Schering Pharma AG)
  • "Propagation and directed differentiation of CNS stem cells" (Neuralstem Biopharma, Stem Cells Inc.)
  • "Recombinant EPO" (Sterrenbeld Biotechnologie; Polymun Scientific Immunbiologische)
  • "Neural Stimulation" (Enteromedics)
  • “Livestock feeds” (Univ. BC, Akzo)


  •  Patent Applications

  • Patent Drafting and Filing
  • Patent Enforcement
  • Patent Portfolio Management
  • Patent Oppositions
  • IP Strategy
  • Commercialisation
  • Freedom to Operate
  • Due Diligence
  • Licensing

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