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UT Among Top 100 Worldwide Universities Granted U.S. Patents

Category: Research

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KNOXVILLE – The University of Tennessee ranks among the top 100 universities in the world granted U.S. utility patents in 2014, according to a new report released by the National Academy of Inventors and the Intellectual Property Owners Association.

The UT Research Foundation, which filed the patents for technology discovered across the UT System, had 24 patents granted in 2014, ranking the University 91st on the top 100 list. The UT Research Foundation is a nonprofit organization that promotes the commercialization of UT intellectual property, encourages an entrepreneurial culture, contributes to state and regional economic development, and promotes research and education to benefit the people of Tennessee and beyond.

Overall, the University of Tennessee had 34 patents in calendar year 2014. This report ranks the number of patents based on the first named assignee on the patent, and there were 10 more patents in which the University was not the first assignee. Patents by campus and institute in 2014 are as follows:

  • UT Institute of Agriculture: 4
  • UT Knoxville: 15
  • UT Health Science Center: 12
  • UT Graduate School of Medicine: 3

“The granting of patents indicates that our faculty and research staff across the system are producing quality outcomes with potential for commercialization, and as a University, we are committed to providing an atmosphere that supports innovation and encourages our researchers to seek protection of their discoveries,” said David Millhorn, president of the UT Research Foundation and executive vice president and vice president of research for the UT System.

The report, based on data obtained from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, recognizes the important role patents play in university research. The National Academy of Inventors and the Intellectual Property Owners Association compile the rankings each year by calculating the number of utility patents granted by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office which list a university as the first assignee on the printed patent. The University of Tennessee made the list for the second year in a row.

View to the full report of the Top 100 Worldwide Universities Granted Patents in 2014.

About the University of Tennessee

The University of Tennessee is comprised of campuses at Knoxville, Chattanooga and Martin; the Health Science Center based in Memphis; and the statewide institutes of agriculture and public service. With a presence in all 95 counties of the state, the University impacts the lives of thousands of Tennesseans every day through education, research and outreach. For more information about the UT Research Foundation, visit

About the National Academy of Inventors

The National Academy of Inventors is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit member organization comprised of U.S. and international universities, and governmental and non-profit research institutions, with over 3,000 individual inventor members and Fellows spanning more than 200 institutions, and growing rapidly. It was founded in 2010 to recognize and encourage inventors with patents issued from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, enhance the visibility of academic technology and innovation, encourage the disclosure of intellectual property, educate and mentor innovative students, and translate the inventions of its members to benefit society.

About the IPO

The Intellectual Property Owners Association (IPO), established in 1972, is a trade association for owners of patents, trademarks, copyrights and trade secrets. IPO is the only association in the U.S. that serves all intellectual property owners in all industries and all fields of technology. IPO advocates for effective and affordable IP ownership rights and provides a wide array of services to members, including: supporting member interests relating to legislative and international issues; analyzing current IP issues; information and educational services; and disseminating information to the general public on the importance of intellectual property rights.


Elizabeth Davis
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Melissa Dos Santos
(865) 974-1809

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Category: Research