Complement in action: An analysis of patent trends from 1976 through 2011

Kun Yang, Robert A. Deangelis, Janet E. Reed, Daniel Ricklin, John D. Lambris

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

8 Scopus citations


Complement is an essential part of the innate immune response. It interacts with diverse endogenous pathways and contributes to the maintenance of homeostasis, the modulation of adaptive immune responses, and the development of various pathologies. The potential usefulness, in both research and clinical settings, of compounds that detect or modulate complement activity has resulted in thousands of publications on complement-related innovations in fields such as drug discovery, disease diagnosis and treatment, and immunoassays, among others. This study highlights the distribution and publication trends of patents related to the complement system that were granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office from 1976 to the present day. A comparison to complement-related documents published by the World Intellectual Property Organization is also included. Statistical analyses revealed increasing diversity in complement-related research interests over time. More than half of the patents were found to focus on the discovery of inhibitors; interest in various inhibitor classes exhibited a remarkable transformation from chemical compounds early on to proteins and antibodies in more recent years. Among clinical applications, complement proteins and their modulators have been extensively patented for the diagnosis and treatment of eye diseases (especially age-related macular degeneration), graft rejection, cancer, sepsis, and a variety of other inflammatory and immune diseases. All of the patents discussed in this chapter, as well as those from other databases, are available from our newly constructed complement patent database:

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationComplement Therapeutics
PublisherSpringer New York LLC
Number of pages13
ISBN (Print)9781461441175
StatePublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes

Publication series

NameAdvances in Experimental Medicine and Biology
ISSN (Print)0065-2598

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'Complement in action: An analysis of patent trends from 1976 through 2011'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this