Cong Yao, Ph.D.



Cong Yao assists clients with IP procurement, Freedom-to-Operate and counseling. Trained in both patent prosecution and patent litigation, Cong obtains and maximizes the value of clients’ IP.

Cong prosecutes patents in all fields of Life Sciences including pharmaceuticals, diagnostic methods, biologics (e.g. antibodies), and cell therapies (e.g. chimeric antigen-receptors T cells). He advises clients in designing and obtaining global patent portfolios.

Cong helps clients analyze and understand the patent landscape by conducting proper Freedom-to-Operate at different stages of a company’s growth and with different focuses to suit clients’ needs and objectives.

Cong counsels clients in various aspects of IP law, including validity analysis, infringement analysis, FDA regulations, market/patent exclusivity, patent licenses, and PTAB proceedings (e.g. Inter Partes Review). He holds the (FDA) Regulatory Affairs Certificate (RAC, U.S.) issued by the Regulatory Affairs Professionals Society (RAPS).

Cong received his J.D. from Boston University School of Law in 2014, and a Ph.D. in Biology from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 2009. He earned a B.S. (with honors) in Biological Sciences and Biotechnology, from Tsinghua University, in 2005.


Boston University School of Law
J.D. 2014

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Ph.D. 2009

Tsinghua University
Biological Sciences and Biotechnology
B.S. (with honors) 2005


Cong’s technical background focuses on molecular biology, neuroscience, cell biology, microscopy, developmental biology, and immunology. He has authored scientific articles on human diseases including autism-like diseases. Cong’s Ph.D. thesis involved knocking down gene expression using a modified RNAi technology taking advantage of morpholinos. He has extensive experience in gene cloning from primer design to analyzing sequencing data. Cong’s postdoctoral work focused on electrophysiology in neurons.

Prior to joining Seed IP, Cong worked as an associate at a global IP firm, and served as an Intern for the Honorable William G. Young of the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts.


Cong is admitted to practice in the states of Washington, California, New York, and Massachusetts, and registered to practice before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. He is a member of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board Bar Association, the Washington State Patent Law Association (WSPLA), Life Science Washington, and the Chinese Antibody Society.

Download Full Bio