IP Lawyer John Zurawski, Known for Life Sciences Work, Joins Ballard Spahr
John A. Zurawski—an intellectual property attorney known for his work with pioneering companies and research institutions in the life sciences, higher education, and emerging growth spaces—has joined Ballard Spahr as a partner, firm Chair Mark Stewart announced today.
Mr. Zurawski is a member of the firm's Intellectual Property Department as well as its Patents, Licensing, and Emerging Growth practices. He provides strategic guidance on business and legal issues, with an emphasis on intellectual property procurement and technology development in the life sciences, biotechnology, and agricultural industries. Mr. Zurawski works closely with startups and entrepreneurs, supporting these emerging businesses with 360-degree guidance throughout their commercial lifecycle—including the critical period between formation and early-stage financing.
His addition adds further breadth and depth to the firm's strong national lineup of intellectual property attorneys, who represent companies and organizations worldwide in developing and marketing groundbreaking innovations.
"We have been looking for the right person to add as a partner in our life sciences IP practice—someone with the outstanding technical skills and commitment to client service that are hallmarks of our IP Department," Mr. Stewart said. "With John, we are fulfilling a strategic priority of the firm, which is based on the needs of our clients, and we are thrilled to have him."
Mr. Zurawski routinely prepares, prosecutes, and manages complex patent portfolios focused on biotechnology, molecular biology, immunology, gene therapy, virology, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, diagnostics, stem cells, and biosensors. He provides patentability opinions and performs portfolio diligence for acquisition and sale-side transactions. In addition, he prepares and negotiates agreements for both in- and out-licensing, sponsored research, joint development, clinical research agreements, and other technology-specific commercial contracts.
Mr. Zurawski advises clients on securing, protecting, commercializing, and managing IP assets, with concentrated experience in exclusivity of patents and regulatory designations for life sciences companies.
Mr. Zurawski's clients include higher education institutions, pharmaceutical companies, and large equipment and vehicle manufacturers. He represents life sciences companies in preclinical and clinical development of diagnostics, therapeutic products, and medical devices. Mr. Zurawski has deep, direct experience working with higher education clients to protect and manage their IP assets. He teams with university tech transfer and licensing offices to prosecute, license, and manage portfolios of patents in the mechanical, biological, and chemical arts. He is active with the Association of University Technology Managers (AUTM), serving as chair of the organization's Eastern Regional Committee.
Mr. Zurawski's pharmaceutical company clients include several in the emerging growth space. The companies are pursuing new chemical and biologic treatments for Parkinson's, psoriasis, cancer, and viral infections. The clients are identifying new licensing opportunities based on proprietary algorithmic analysis of genetic data and are selling specialized cell-based assays for toxicology studies.
"John is a tremendous addition to our team and will benefit clients in a number of industries, particularly life sciences and biotech," said Lynn Rzonca, Chair of Ballard Spahr's Intellectual Property Department. "John's combination of legal, business, and scientific acumen and experience will be of great value to clients as they face complex and evolving challenges in the patent sphere."
Mr. Zurawski joins Ballard Spahr from McCarter & English, where he was a partner in the intellectual property practice.
"I was looking to align my clients' needs in patent prosecution and venture finance with a culture of collaboration," Mr. Zurawski said. "I also was looking for a firm of understanding the needs of a young entrepreneur and a Fortune 100 company. Ultimately, I found a firm with a commitment to working as a true member of the client's team.”
"Ballard Spahr's collaborative environment, national platform in both IP and corporate law, and excellence across technical fields will allow me to provide clients with better service and value. I am very excited to contribute my skillset and experience to the Ballard Spahr team and our clients."
Ballard Spahr's intellectual property lawyers advise clients in key industries, including life sciences, medical, and health care, on developing, enforcing, protecting, and commercializing intellectual property, as well as handling transactions involving IP assets. They have worked with clients on groundbreaking innovations in DNA and protein therapeutics, genetic engineering, cancer and HIV therapy, bioinstrumentation, stem cell therapy, crop science, and other technologies. They also represent venture capitalists and others who invest in this rapidly developing industry.