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ASU patent count among the world’s top 10 in 2023, inventors group says

AZ Inno

Arizona State University is among the world’s leading institutions for the number of U.S. utility patents issued to it in 2023.

The National Academy of Inventors’ 2023 list of the Top Worldwide Universities Granted U.S. Utility Patents found that ASU was granted 170 such patents last year — a jump from 160 in 2022. The latest number ranked ASU No. 9 in the world and No. 7 in the nation.

This marks the third time ASU has appeared in the top 10. It was No. 8 in 2021 and No. 10 in 2018. The list has been published every year since 2013.

“Being in the top 10 rankings both worldwide and among U.S.-based universities for patent data underscores ASU’s commitment to excellence and innovation,” said Sally Morton, executive vice president of ASU’s Knowledge Enterprise, in a statement. “This is a testament to our faculty and staff whose perseverance and ingenuity place ASU at the forefront of supporting real-world solutions that benefit society.”

ASU said that its patents in 2023 included those for a colon cancer treatment that uses a genetically modified bacteria, a test to identify disease-specific antibodies using a wearable device and an environmentally sustainable alternative to cement.

Among the other U.S. institutions ranked in the top 10 were the regents of the University of California at No. 1 (546 patents) and the University of Texas system (235 patents) at No. 3, meaning their actual totals were spread across multiple schools. Massachusetts Institute of Technology was No. 2 with 365 patents.

UArizona just misses Top 50 in patents ranking

The University of Arizona was also on the list, coming in at No. 51 with 61 patents, bringing the Arizona patent total to 231. UArizona was No. 22 on the 2022 list.

“The Top 100 Worldwide list highlights the essential role universities across the globe play in creating patented technologies that beneficially impact society,” said Paul Sanberg, president of the NAI, in a statement. “At the academy, it is important for us to recognize and celebrate research and commercialization happening at the university level, as well as spread awareness on how intellectual property can benefit innovators and their institutions.”

ASU’s patent activity has contributed to high rankings on some other lists in the past year.

Last fall, the Association of University Technology Managers ranked ASU in the top five in all four of its categories: inventions disclosed, patent licenses and option deals closed, U.S. patents secured and startups launched.

And over the summer, ASU for the ninth straight year held the No. 1 spot on U.S. News & World Report’s list of the nation’s most innovative colleges.

The NAI said its list is based on data from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and counts universities that offer undergraduate degrees.

A utility patent is one of several kinds of patents issued by the U.S. government, and it is defined as one “issued for the invention of a new and useful process, machine, manufacture, or composition of matter, or a new and useful improvement thereof.” Utility patents have also been called “patents for invention.”

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