Patents 4 Patients

During his 2016 State of the Union Address, President Obama called on Vice President Biden to lead a new, national “Moonshot” initiative to eliminate cancer as we know it.  On February, 1, 2016, the White House announced a new $1 billion initiative to jumpstart this work.

To support the National Cancer Moonshot, we established Patents 4 Patients, also known as the Cancer Immunotherapy Pilot Program. This program provides a fast-track review for cancer immunotherapy-related patent applications without the need for applicant to pay a petition fee.  Under this program, patent applications pertaining to cancer immunotherapy are advanced out of turn for examination, resulting in their accelerated review.  

Patents 4 Patients aims to cut the time it takes to review patent applications pertaining to cancer immunotherapy in half by issuing final decisions in one year or less after they are received. 

Patents 4 Patients:  

  • Applications must contain one or more claims to a method of treating a cancer using immunotherapy.
  • Applicants must file a grantable petition under this initiative using our patent electronic filing system (EFS-Web).
  • Open to: 
    • any application that has not received a first Office action,
    • any application where the petition is filed with a Request for Continued Examination (RCE), or
    • any application not under final rejection where the claimed cancer immunotherapy is the subject of an active Investigational New Drug (IND) application that has entered Phase II or Phase III (FDA) clinical trials.
  • No additional fee is required to participate in the program.


How to file

  • Fill out Petition Form: PTO/SB/443
  • Save form and upload via our patent electronic filing system, EFS-Web
  • Select document description, "Petition for Cancer Immunotherapy Pilot"
    (found under the “Petition Category”) on the EFS-Web screen to ensure processing
  • If a new application, do not choose “Accelerated Exam” or “Track One”


Contact us

For questions about EFS-Web or the PAIR system, please contact the Patent Electronic Business Center at 866-217-9197.

For questions regarding a specific cancer immunotherapy petition, please contact one of the following:


Technology Representative

E-mail Address


TC 1600

Gary B. Nickol

(571) 272-0835

TC 1600

Brandon J. Fetterolf

(571) 272-2919

For questions regarding the Cancer Immunotherapy Pilot Program Federal Register Notice, please contact the Office of Patent Legal Administration at 571-272-7704 or e-mail


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