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Depositing micro-organisms

The Budapest Treaty allows an applicant to deposit a sample of a micro-organism in order to meet the requirements for repeatability and full description of biological materials.

Deposit subject matter

The deposits are made at an International Depositary Authority (IDA) on or before the filing date of the complete patent application.
Materials that may be deposited under the Budapest Treaty include:

  • cells (bacteria, fungi, cell lines, plant spores)
  • seeds that can be dried to a low moisture content and stored at -20°C or lower
  • genetic vectors such as plasmids or bacteriophage vectors or viruses containing a gene or DNA fragments
  • organisms or systems used to produce a protein from a gene. These include:
    • bacterial, yeast, viral, plant or animal cell cultures
    • yeast, algae, protozoa, eukaryotic cells, cell lines, hybridomas, viruses, plant tissue cells, spores, and hosts containing materials such as vectors, cell organelles, plasmids, DNA, RNA, genes and chromosomes
    • purified nucleic acids
    • deposits of materials not readily classifiable as micro-organisms, such as 'naked' DNA, RNA, or plasmids, subject to the qualification given below.

International Depositary Authorities (IDA)

There are approximately 30 IDAs worldwide, two of which are in Australia.

We can provide a list of IDAs in other countries on request. They are also listed in the World Intellectual Property Organisation's Guide to the Deposit of Micro-organisms under the Budapest Treaty.

The two Australian IDAs are the National Measurement Institute (NMI), formerly the Australian Government Analytical Laboratories, in Victoria and the Lady Mary Fairfax CellBank Australia (CBA) Westmead, NSW.

The CBA will accept deposits for animal and human cell lines.

The National Measurement Institute will accept deposits of bacteria (including actinomycetes), yeasts and fungi, other than known human and animal pathogens, with a hazard categorisation no greater than WHO Classification Risk Group 2. These must be preserved without significant change to their properties with the preservation techniques in use.

The Institute will also accept nucleic acid preparations and phases under certain conditions but will not accept:

  • micro-organisms that require special attention to handling and preparation for storage
  • animal, plant, algal and protozoal cultures
  • viral, rickettsial and chlamydial agents
  • seeds (IDAs that accept seed deposits).

Last Updated: 03/4/2014

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Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry

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