University of Kentucky Research

Technology Transfer and Intellectual Property Development

intellectual propertyThe development of intellectual property — any innovation or discovery conceived or developed using university resources — is a partnership between the university and the faculty, staff and students who make the discoveries.

The 1980 Bayh-Dole Act gives universities ownership of intellectual property resulting from federally funded research. This enables UK to protect the IP through patenting, and develop the IP into useful technologies and products to benefit the public through licensing. In addition, UK inventors, their departments and their colleges benefit from royalty sharing. Inventors can further develop their IP by licensing to their own startup company.

Once you make a discovery or develop an innovation, it is your responsibility as university faculty, staff or student to make a disclosure to the UK Intellectual Property Committee according to AR 7:6 Intellectual Property Disposition and Administrative Regulations (PDF, 9 pages).

The Intellectual Property Development Office (IPDO), conveniently located in the ASTeCC building, will help you with the disclosure and patenting process. For disclosures, please contact Sabrina Darnell,, 859-218-6555. The IPDO will schedule your presentation with the Intellectual Property Committee.

If you are collaborating with industry and others outside UK, contact the IPDO to determine if a confidential disclosure agreement (CDA) and/or a material transfer agreement (MTA) is needed. Please remember that you are required to contact the IPDO before any tangible research material (chemical or biological) leaves the university. In addition, the IPDO reviews MTAs for incoming materials. Both MTAs and CDAs provide additional protection for you and UK.

This site will guide you through internal policies and administrative regulations on topics related to your intellectual property. Also see the Intellectual Property Development Guide (PDF, 2 pages).