• Kieran Williams
  • Principal & Patent Attorney
  • Shelston IP

Curriculum Vitae


Bachelor of Science (Honors), University of Sydney
Doctor of Philosophy, University of Sydney
Master of Industrial Property (Intellectual Property Law), University of Technology Sydney

Professional Experience

Kieran is a Registered Australian and New Zealand Patent Attorney practicing in the biotechnology, pharmaceutical and life sciences fields. Kieran has extensive experience in drafting patent specifications, filing and prosecuting local and foreign patent applications, preparing and prosecuting applications for pharmaceutical patent term extensions, preparing patent validity and infringement advice, and freedom to operate opinions, conducting patent oppositions, patent watching and searching, and filing and prosecuting plant breeder’s rights applications.

Prior to becoming a Patent Attorney, Kieran was a Patent Examiner at IP Australia, a Clinical Pharmacology Scientist at GlaxoSmithKline Australia, and has held Postdoctoral Fellowships at St Vincent’s Hospital in Australia, the Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology in Germany and the University of Aberdeen in Scotland.

Research Interests

Intellectual Property - specializing in biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, neurobiology, immunology, molecular biology, stem cell biology and plant breeder’s rights

Honors & Awards

Registered Patent Attorney (Australia and New Zealand)
Registered Trade Mark Attorney (Australia)
Fellow, Institute of Patent and Trade Mark Attorneys of Australia




What is patentable in Australia? Recent IP trends and their implications for cell & gene therapy

Treatment of disease using cell and gene therapies is rapidly evolving, with emerging technologies being developed and trialled at an increasing rate. However, bringing these kinds of treatments to market involves substantial investments of time, resources and money, and biotech companies need to seek protection for their discoveries to ensure a return on investment. Traditionally, such protection has been obtained through patenting but, unlike traditional pharmaceuticals, the patentability of cell & gene therapies is somewhat unclear and varies greatly between jurisdictions.

This presentation will examine the patentability of cell & gene therapies in Australia, including discussing the legislative requirements, IP trends, and case law - there have been several court and patent office decisions in the last couple of years that have had a significant impact on the types of therapies that can be patented. The presentation will also discuss regulatory requirements associated with commercializing cell and gene therapies in Australia.