A gaggle of researchers affiliated to the University of São Paulo (USP) – campus Ribeirão Preto, Brazil, used large information instruments corresponding to information mining and community evaluation to develop a way to assist scientists and corporations establish technological routes, traits and partnerships in any information space. For this function, it collected data from patent databases around the globe.
In addition to mapping the patents in an space, this novel technique identifies the technological routes utilized by firms and universities in a number of nations, in addition to rising traits and networks of partnerships between firms and scientific establishments lively within the sector.
Described in an article printed in Nature Biotechnology, the tactic resulted from the postdoctoral research of biologist Cristiano Gonçalves Pereira on the University of São Paulo’s Ribeirão Preto School of Economics, Administration and Accounting (FEARP-USP), supported by a scholarship from the São Paulo Research Foundation – FAPESP.
Pereira was supervised by Geciane Silveira Porto, a professor at FEARP-USP and coordinator of the Center for Research on Innovation, Technology Management and Competitiveness (InGTeC). The examine featured collaborations from Virgínia Picanço-Castro and Dimas Tadeu Covas), respectively researcher and coordinator on the Center for Cell-Based Therapy (CTC), a Research, Innovation and Dissemination Center (RIDC) funded by FAPESP.
Researchers used the recombinant issue VIII research as a sensible instance to develop the tactic. Recombinant issue VIII is a protein produced synthetically from human cells to deal with sufferers who are suffering from hemophilia A, a blood clotting dysfunction attributable to a genetic mutation within the area of the X chromosome DNA that ought to produce issue VIII.
The improvement of research on technological routes for recombinant issue VIII – in addition to for photo voltaic power and biofuels – was supported by FAPESP, which additionally funded the researchers’ use of a database masking patent functions and grants processed by patent places of work worldwide.
Advances on hemophilia research
Finding a option to extend the motion of recombinant issue VIII within the organism might significantly enhance the lives of hemophiliacs. Employing new molecules together would enable extending the half-life of recombinant issue VIII, which in flip would scale back the variety of functions of the protein and the price of therapy.
By analyzing related patents, InGTeC and CTC produced information that allowed the researchers to discover a molecule known as XTEN, which may be thought of as a extremely promising technique of extending the half-life of recombinant issue VIII.
Pereira defined why the group selected mapping patentes as a substitute of scientific articles. “Patent databases are extra sturdy and supply a extra correct image of the state-of-the-art within the discipline of curiosity,” Pereira defined. “In addition, citations of scientific articles are a alternative: the researcher decides which references to quote in a paper. In the case of patents, the applicant is required to quote all patents used to develop an innovation even when they belong to a competitor.”
Among the progressive traits in research and improvement on recombinant issue VIII detected by the examine is large-scale manufacturing with increased high quality.
“The focus for a lot R&D on this discipline is on including dietary supplements to recombinant issue VIII in order that it is extra concentrated, sturdy and refined. We additionally noticed applied sciences designed to scale back the protein’s immunogenicity, which means its capacity to stimulate an immune response within the affected person,” Pereira stated. Immune response is an issue to be solved as a result of, though recombinant issue VIII is produced from human cells, it might be rejected by the affected person’s organism if the immune system identifies it as a international physique and assaults it.
Data mining for the challenge used Derwent Innovation, a platform masking nearly 100 patent places of work for jurisdictions around the globe, together with Brazil.
The researchers discovered 3,424 patents referring to recombinant issue VIII for the interval 1997-2016 (patents on this discipline sometimes final 20 years). The years 2017 and 2018 weren’t searched due to secrecy guidelines governing patent functions on this interval.
Having accomplished the survey, the researchers additionally wanted to learn greater than 3,400 paperwork, which might not have been potential with out large information instruments corresponding to information mining.
They deployed strategies corresponding to textual content evaluation and phrase frequency distribution, in addition to social community evaluation, which makes use of computational assets to check the interactions among the many individuals, teams and organizations in any given discipline.
“Our first concern was to see how cooperation happens and map the cooperation networks,” Pereira stated. “We then recognized patent assignees, who’s cooperating with whom, interplay between universities, research establishments and corporations, who’s kind of influential within the community, who wants partnerships, and different components.”
The examine confirmed, for occasion, that the United States is the main nation when it comes to patent manufacturing on this discipline; that there’s a group of European firms that collaborate intensely with one another and are due to this fact extra influential; and that Brazil doesn’t function in any cooperation networks, most likely as a result of collaboration amongst its firms and research establishments is simply too uncommon for the tactic to detect.
The subsequent step was an evaluation of technological prospecting to know rising traits lately and to detect future traits.
“To do that, we studied patent citations and patent themes, analyzing titles and mining probably the most frequent phrases within the final 20 years. We did the identical evaluation for the final 5 years to detect rising traits,” Pereira stated.
The technique generated two community maps, one for cooperation that recognized nodes linking firms and research establishments, and one other for patent citations. “The patent quotation community map exhibits how one expertise helps assemble one other and tracks the information flows concerned,” famous the FAPESP-supported researcher.
Because improvements sometimes consequence from a mixture of a number of patents, it’s potential to conclude that probably the most incessantly cited patent mixture indicates a development in technological routes.
To analyze citations and map technological routes, Pereira tailored a plugin developed by InGTeC to allow Gephi software program to calculate the search path hyperlink depend, which is the variety of instances probably the most frequent route has been used.
The examine didn’t lead to routinely relevant software program or in a particular platform, however in response to Pereira, the tactic may be reproduced to look any discipline based mostly on the reasons provided within the article printed in Nature Biotechnology.
InGTeC coordinator Silveira Porto pressured the rising significance given to patents in academia now that universities and research establishments are inserting extra emphasis on software numbers.
“Technological route mapping may also help researchers establish rising applied sciences of their fields,” she stated. “When they design a research challenge, they’ll use this data to suggest research which can be on the scientific and technological frontier.”
Technological route mapping can also be extremely helpful for firms. “The technique may give a supervisor or director of research, improvement and innovation an outline of the rising applied sciences within the firm’s sector or in sectors wherein it is planning to take a position. It can be used to check the stage of technological maturity reached by the corporate with the maturity of the businesses that personal the primary applied sciences within the routes recognized by the mapping train,” Porto added.
“Managers can use this data to pursue technological partnerships and expertise switch, and even to amass or put money into a startup. The technique’s contribution to company strategic intelligence is very important.”
About São Paulo Research Foundation (FAPESP)
The São Paulo Research Foundation (FAPESP) is a public establishment with the mission of supporting scientific research in all fields of information by awarding scholarships, fellowships and grants to investigators linked with increased training and research establishments within the State of São Paulo, Brazil. FAPESP is conscious that the perfect research can solely be accomplished by working with the perfect researchers internationally. Therefore, it has established partnerships with funding businesses, increased training, personal firms, and research organizations in different nations recognized for the standard of their research and has been encouraging scientists funded by its grants to additional develop their worldwide collaboration. For extra data: http://www.fapesp.br/en .