Patent Basics: Subject Matter

In order to be patentable, a patent application must cover patentable subject matter. What counts is pretty broad: articles of manufacture, compositions, devices, processes, business methods, software, genes, and many other items. In fact, one court described patentable subject matter as “anything under the sun made by man.” What counts as patentable subject matter has expanded and shrunk over time. Right now, we are at a high water mark for patentability, with algorithms, software, business methods, and the human genome all pushing the boundaries. Read more