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Michael Christie, Ph.D.

Patent Attorney
+61.2.9513.2497
Fax +61.2.9513.2399

Dr. Christie is a registered Australian and New Zealand patent attorney with a technical background in biotechnology. His work includes drafting and prosecuting patent applications, providing advice on the validity and infringement of patents, and acting in opposition matters.

Dr. Christie acts across a range of technical fields including pharmaceuticals, diagnostics, immunology, agriculture, genetics and genomics, biochemistry, chemistry, food technology, nanotechology and medical devices.

Dr. Christie also assists clients to obtain and enforce plant breeder's rights in Australia and plant variety rights in New Zealand. He is the only Australian patent attorney to be accredited by the Plant Breeder's Rights Office as a Qualified Person, enabling him to certify plant breeder's rights applications.

Dr. Christie is a member of the advisory committee for the Deep Green Biotech Hub, which aims to develop and commercialise algal biotechnologies, and the Good Food Institute, which aims to develop and commercialise clean meat technologies. Dr. Christie is also a member of the Standing Committee on Pharma and Biotechnology for the International Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property (AIPPI).

Professional Background

Dr. Christie holds a Bachelors degree, with honours, in plant biotechnology and a Ph.D in molecular biology. For his honours research, Dr. Christie was awarded the University Medal, and for his Ph.D, he was awarded the Dean's Award for outstanding academic achievement. Dr. Christie's post-graduate research focused on different mechanisms of RNA degradation in plants and animals.

Dr. Christie also holds a Graduate Certificate in Research Commercialisation and a Master of Intellectual Property, both of which were awarded with distinction. During his Master of Intellectual Property, Michael was awarded the AJ Park Prize for the highest performance in Drafting of Patent Specifications.

Dr. Christie has a keen interest in biotech commercialisation and has worked as a technology and commercialisation analyst within the technology transfer office of a leading Australian university. After finishing his Ph.D, Dr. Christie worked as a post-doctoral fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology in Tuebingen, Germany, where he studied the regulation of gene expression at a molecular and genome-wide level. He then worked as a patent attorney at a specialist intellectual property law firm where he represented a range of local and international clients.

Professional/Civic Activities

  • Institute of Patent and Trademark Attorneys – Member 
  • Intellectual Property Society of Australia and New Zealand – Member 
  • Asian Patent Attorneys Association – Member
  • AusBiotech – Member 
  • RNA Society – Member 
  • International Association for Plant Biotechnology – Member
  • Australian Institute of Food Science and Technology - Member
  • Standing Committee on Pharma and Biotechnology (AIPPI) – Member
  • Deep Green Biotech Hub – Advisory Panel Member
  • Good Food Institute – IP Advisor
  • Food Frontier – Scientific and IP Advisor

Speaking Engagements

Dr. Christie has delivered presentations to industry and academic groups on issues relating to patents and plant breeder's rights.

Additional Information

Dr. Christie has written extensively about intellectual property law, particularly on issues relating to patents and plant breeder's rights. He has also been commissioned by LexisNexis to write the commentary on the Plant Breeder's Rights Act 1994 (Cth).

Dr. Christie has also published extensively in high-impact scientific journals including Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA, Plant Journal and Plant Physiology.

  • Preparing and prosecuting patent applications spanning a wide range of technical fields including pharmaceuticals, agriculture, immunology, diagnostics, genetics and genomics, biochemistry, chemistry, food technology, nanotechnology and medical devices. 
  • Providing advice on patentability, patent validity, patent infringement, inventorship, commercialisation and patent portfolio management.
  • Representing clients in patent opposition matters relating to technical fields such as agriculture, plant biology, pharmaceuticals and fermentation. 
  • Obtaining and enforcing plant breeder's rights.