New WIPO study on A.I. inventions and EDPB opinion on clinical trials

The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) has launched its first “Technology Trends” Study on developments in Artificial Intelligence inventions and the EDPB issued an opinion on processing of personal data on clinical trials.

AI – WIPO analyses the evolution in the inventions landscape

At the end of January 2019, the WIPO launched its inaugural report in a new flagship series, WIPO Technology Trends, which devises a new framework for the understanding of developments in the leading intellectual property field, with a focus on the latest topics.

The first study investigates the trends in the emerging AI era, analyzing patent, scientific publishing and other data to review past and current trends in AI, while offering insights into how innovation in this field is likely to develop in the coming years.

The analysis of AI-related technologies is layed out to reflect the three dimensions of AI:

  • techniques used in AI, such as machine learning;
  • functional applications, such as speech processing and computer vision; and
  • application fields, including telecommunications and transportation.

For each of these areas, the report provides data and analysis that identify the key players, geographical spread and market activity, including acquisitions and litigation.

The AI dilemma is one of the global hot topics as its impact may totally disrupt business models and liability schemes, hence this report is particularly interesting since it includes contributions from AI experts from across the globe, addressing issues such as existing and potential uses and impact of AI technology, legal and regulatory questions, and data protection and ethical concerns.

Privacy – EDPB issues opinion on data processing in clinical trials

Following a request from the European Commission, the European Data Protection Board (EDPB) adopted its long awaited opinion on the clinical trials.

The opinion addresses in particular the aspects related to the adequate legal bases in the context of clinical trials, and the secondary uses of clinical trial data for scientific purposes.

While providing guidance for a consistent data protection approach to clinical trials in the EU, the opinion addresses a number of topics in order to clarify the interplay between the Clinical Trials Regulation (CTR) and the GDPR, including informed consent and its withdrawal and information of data subjects. Sponsors will particularly benefit from the guidance on legal bases.

The CTR shall finally become applicable in 2020 and since the GDPR as well makes express references to the relevant legislation applicable to clinical trials, both legislation will apply simultaneously.

The applicable data protection rules in the long term and in particular the interplay between secondary use of clinical trials data under the CTR and the GDPR’s presumption of compatibility need to be addressed further.

The EDPB opinion on clinical trials will now be transmitted to the European Commission.

If you would like to receive more information please contact  Tommaso Ricci, @