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Competitive Intelligence Gets a Boost with Reaxys Patent Expansion

Posted on April 30th, 2021 by in Chemistry

The insights only found in patents can provide a crucial competitive advantage for innovative companies. In response to customer demand, Elsevier recently announced a major expansion of the patent content available to users of Reaxys, our chemistry information solution. Users can now get relevant patents for pharma and chemical R&D from 105 patent offices and 170 IPC classes. This also includes English language translations of foreign-language patents, which is important given that scientific advances are being made every day all across the globe.

The expansion comes as a result of a collaboration between Elsevier and LexisNexis that offers Reaxys customers access to the LexisNexis Intellectual Property patent content behind LexisNexis TotalPatent One.

We talked to Rosalind Sankey, Senior Product Manager Chemistry at Elsevier, to find out more about how Reaxys users can benefit from this new offering.

What does Elsevier’s partnership with LexisNexis bring to Reaxys users?

Rosalind Sankey: They give us expanded content and credibility, which gives our Reaxys community confidence that the content they’re getting is good quality. It’s exhaustive and probably the most expansive available in the world. The other thing that’s provided through LexisNexis, which other solutions don’t appear to provide, is the translation of the patent claim and the abstract, which we’ve already heard from customer feedback is quite important. It makes it easier to search for text.

What kind of unique insights can chemistry researchers and information specialists get from patents in Reaxys that they can’t find elsewhere?

RS: Because we’ve gone from seven patent offices to the whole 105 offices, and we have done so with a sophisticated automated pipeline, we have the potential to deliver more authorities than other chemistry-based solution in really short times — gaining breadth of content in a timely manner. What’s pretty unique with our solution is the way we are using data science to identify and extract critical information from patents; it’s really quite novel and to do it well requires state-of-the art technology. From an end user point of view, it’s about the fact that we can get comprehensive information to them really quickly.

We still index a subset of those patents with manual excerption, so customers are benefiting from our unique excerpted experimental information, giving them deep insights into the innovations published in patents. The new automated pipeline delivers high breadth of content, while the manual excerption goes deep. So customers can access biological activities, substance properties, and in-depth information which you can’t get in other solutions.

So it’s a unique combination that offers the breadth of coverage and fast retrieval time to the customer with the automated pipeline AND the in-depth insights with a manual pipeline?

RS: Exactly. Our competitors did that breadth piece well, which is where we have stepped up with more patent coverage. But they don’t necessarily have the depth that we do.

How much do researchers working in pharmaceutical R&D, in particular, benefit from this increased access to patent information?

RS: When you’re doing competitive intelligence searching, it tends to be text-based searching – looking at what competitor companies are working on, biological targets, indications and diseases. This is where the biggest step forward is with this expansion. You can do that text-based searching on competitive intelligence in Reaxys and be confident you’re covering more of the patent landscape.

We can already see from the customer feedback that they’re saying, ‘Now I’m going to start using Reaxys as my first choice to look for this information.’

How is target searching on Reaxys different now than previously?

RS: When you searched for a target in Reaxys before, it was all about the bioactivity data related to that patent or that compound that was tested against. Which is great when you want to go in-depth. But when you’re talking about that competitive intelligence part, it’s not so much the data that you’re interested in. When you’re doing competitive intelligence, the question is: ‘I have this target that I’m about to start a project on. What is known about it and who else is working on it? Have I got a good chance of building a project that’s going to be successful looking for compounds against this target or not?’

Rosalind Sankey, Senior Product Manager Chemistry at Elsevier

Previously, it was too narrow, covering too few offices. We have not only expanded the coverage, but also ensured to apply the latest data science technology to assess the relevancy of a given target. The reason this is so important is you’re adding the ability to do higher-level, broader text-based searching on biological targets, retrieving relevant results thanks to our primary target indexing. Once you have a good view of the patent landscape, you can decide for which targets you want to retrieve in-depth experimental data.

If you can’t do that high-level target search on a text basis in patent or journal content, you’ve only seen a very narrow world. Later on in your project, you’re going to say, ‘Okay, so which substances have bioactivities against this target?’ That’s also great where the manual excerption in Reaxys comes in, but you need both. You can’t have just one or the other.

Q: Can you share a little bit about how this would have helped you in your own practice when you were doing research?

RS: Definitely. We’d worked with a CRO, and we’d often be bidding for projects and creating proposals. This would have helped me because when you are trying to understand the patent landscape and setting out the vision for the project, that’s where this type of information is crucial. I would have been able to use Reaxys to investigate – ‘Is that a good strategy to pursue? Does that disease have a causal link with that target? Is there a good opportunity to pursue this or not?’ And also seeing who else is playing in that space as well.

What it allows you to do is craft those proposals with a lot of scientific information, so you’ve got a better chance to win the business. And then you also have a better opportunity to execute on the project, because when you’re executing, Reaxys experimental data is critical to find insights quickly and progress your project with confidence on the choices you make – so that’s where the manual excerption is important.

Are there any other projects you are working on with LexisNexis?

RS: Yes. Another piece of critical feedback we’ve had from customers is that they want stronger data and information on the patent ownership, because sometimes patents can move if companies get acquired, or sometimes companies buy patents from other companies.

This is a strength for LexisNexis. They track the movement of patent ownership and company information really, really well. What we’re working on with them on right now is how do we get that information into Reaxys, so users can easily search for ownership of a patent.

On the other side is allowing users to see who filed the patent originally, and who owns it now, because it can change. That was another piece of strong customer feedback we received, not only that the search perspective needed to improve and the filtering by having more structured company name information, but also the status of a patent as well.

Learn more about the extensive chemistry patent coverage available in Reaxys here.

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