David Holland


David is a Partner in the Life Sciences group and has a diverse practice, working with therapeutic proteins, modified nucleic acids and traditional small molecules. He frequently handles platform technology cases, from drafting provisionals to worldwide prosecution, and from divisional strategy to post-grant opposition. He has particular experience helping medium and early-stage companies build their IP strategy, with recent successes for Ionis Pharmaceuticals, Ambrx, and G1 Therapeutics.  David’s advice is built on over a decade supporting both start-ups and more established players such as Incyte, Biogen, Acorda and Sanofi. Another of David’s specialisms is European patent term extensions (SPCs) for a wide range of products, including Jakavi, Spinraza and Evarrest.

David’s practice focuses on managing interrelated oppositions and appeals at the EPO, often providing strategic advice where his client is opponent in one case and proprietor in the next. He works in collaboration with the firm’s dispute resolution team, including trips to the German national courts to support on-going litigation. David has a particular interest in the development of the Unified Patent Court (UPC), and he’s worked extensively on his firm’s preparations for this new European patent system. David is often asked to share his UPC expertise, both through industry-wide events such as those organised by AIPLA and also as a guest lecturer at the European Patent Litigator course held by the Politecnico di Milano. David looks forward to representing clients in this new venue for pan-European patent litigation.

Another of David’s specialisms is European patent term extensions (SPCs) for a wide range of products, including Jakavi, Spinraza and Evarrest. Clients often rely on David to manage oppositions and patent prosecution that interlink with the SPC strategy. As part of this work, he assesses both the SPC and patent coverage, and the interplay with the regulatory protection available to his clients (including orphan protection). David is frequently involved in appeals against SPC refusals across Europe, including hearings at the UKIPO and supporting litigation in Spain and Sweden.

David was awarded a first-class degree in Natural Sciences from the University of Cambridge. He took full advantage of the breadth of this course by studying subjects as diverse as biochemistry, pharmacology, physiology and organic chemistry. This combination of experience gives David a particular edge when advising on products at the intersection of these fields, such as therapeutic polymers, antisense oligonucleotides and chemically modified proteins.

[David] comes in for praise for his “thoroughness and attention to detail. He can be relied on to bring in great results, no matter the instruction.”
IAM Patent 1000, 2024


  • MSci and MA Natural Sciences (University of Cambridge)
  • Chartered Patent Attorney
  • European Patent Attorney
  • UPC Representative

Key Cases

  • Hetlioz® – Vanda v two opponents (second medical use – EPO)
  • Invokana® – Janssen  v Sandoz (formulations – EPO)
  • Fampyra® – Acorda v three opponents (second medical use – EPO)
  • Feburic® – Teijin v Quimica Sintetica (polymorphs – EPO)