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InventIon and Intellectual ProPertyApril 2014 EndovAsculAr TodAy 81 This article is part two of a series that presents the three big issues in intellectual property: Do you own it? Can you protect it? Do you have freedom to practice it? In this article, we explore common issues involving the second question: Can you protect it? The first part of this series appeared in the March 2014 issue of Endovascular Today.DO YOU EVEN NEED A PATENT?A lot of companies sell unpatented devices and services, relying instead on factors like marketing and price compe-tition to maintain market share. Usually, that will not suc-ceed in the medical device industry. The cost of product development and the cost and delay of regulatory approv-als, among other challenges, are too great to attract invest-ment capital unless the investor is confident that you have (or are likely to obtain) adequate patent protection. Unless you can attract sufficient capital, you normally have no realistic chance of taking a pro...