Before performing a screen with the SMDC, users must sign a data-sharing agreement that provides for the deposition of primary screening data in a non-public database accessible only by users and the SMDC. Posting data in this way is not regarded as a public disclosure for the purposes of patent prosecution. Users can view their data via a password protected website that displays activities, assay metrics and even preliminary SAR from the screen. The database is also used by SMDC scientists to help maintain and improve the quality of the screening library.
For research that leads to patent filings, SMDC scientists must be listed as inventors under federal statute if their contribution(s) is(are) included in at least one of the claims of the patent application. Inventive contributions are most likely to be made during medicinal chemistry efforts but may also occur in the development of a novel assay. The SMDC will not expect intellectual property rights to screening protocols developed independently by external users.
With regard to scientific publications, co-authorship by and acknowledgement of SMDC scientists should be afforded using the same standards that would be applied to any other scientific collaborator. We also ask that the SMDC be specifically acknowledged in publications describing the results of screens conducted with the center. In cases where the SMDC intends to file a composition-of-matter patent application, it is important that the structures of claimed chemical entities not be disclosed prior to filing of the application. Investigators should recognize that this requirement may impact publication timelines in some cases.