Dr. Robert Cerpa is a Senior Patent Agent in the Palo Alto office of Morrison & Foerster and has been with Morrison & Foerster since 1996. He has extensive experience in patent drafting and patent prosecution before the United States Patent and Trademark Office, and in coordination of patent prosecution before the European Patent Office, Japanese Patent Office, and other jurisdictions in association with foreign patent counsel. He also has substantial expertise in prior art searching in the chemical and biotechnology arts, in due diligence inquiries and intellectual property portfolio evaluations, in litigation support, and in patent interferences. Dr. Cerpa has worked with a wide range of clients, including start-up biotech and chemistry companies, large pharmaceutical companies, universities, and independent inventors.
Dr. Cerpa has prosecuted patent applications in several areas of chemistry and biotechnology, including small-molecule pharmaceuticals, protein and DNA compositions, bioinformatics, liposomes, scientific instrumentation, and chemical processes. He has also participated in significant projects in the areas of materials science and solid-state physics.
Dr. Cerpa received his bachelor's degree in chemistry from Harvard University, where he did research involving semiconductor photoelectrochemistry. After graduation, he worked at Harvard as a research assistant in the laboratory of Professor James G. Anderson, studying atmospheric chemistry and laser spectroscopy of gas phase species. He then worked at Rockefeller University in the laboratory of the late Professor Emil T. Kaiser, in the field of peptide chemistry and bioorganic chemistry. Dr. Cerpa obtained his Ph.D. degree in biophysics at the University of California, San Francisco, in the laboratory of Professor Irwin D. Kuntz, where he studied peptide structure using nuclear magnetic resonance, circular dichroism, Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy, and other techniques. Dr. Cerpa was the recipient of a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Predoctoral Fellowship from 1989-1994, and received a President's Dissertation Year Fellowship from the University of California for 1994-1995.