Gregory J. Leighton is a member of Neal Gerber Eisenberg’s Intellectual Property & Technology Transactions practice group and is also a registered patent attorney. Greg’s practice involves both patent prosecution and the protection and enforcement of various forms of intellectual property. One key focus of Greg’s practice is controversies regarding intellectual property rights in the chemical and life sciences areas. Some of his recent representative matters in this space include successfully representing clients in patent disputes before federal courts and the United States International Trade Commission regarding the genetic sequence of microorganisms used in fermentation processes and the production of sintered rare earth magnets.
Greg also has represented clients in numerous patent, trademark, and copyright cases in federal court and the Patent Trial and Appeal Board dealing with digital or e-commerce-based properties. Many of these cases have turned on issues at the forefront of how intellectual property laws are adapted to govern Internet-based technology, including a ground-breaking decision in the Seventh Circuit regarding the type of copyright liability that can be attached to hyperlinks. Greg frequently counsels clients on how to structure their websites and online content to avoid copyright and trademark pitfalls as well as to take advantage of the safe harbors provided by the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.
Greg also regularly engages in the management and prosecution of patent portfolios in a wide array of technologies ranging from consumer electronics to chemical and fuel processing.
Prior to becoming an attorney, Greg had significant lab and commercial experience as a chemical engineer. During his studies at Northwestern, Greg participated in substantial amounts of lab research and work that included the design and experimental testing of chemical processing systems comprising a wide array of reactions and process components. During and after his undergraduate studies, Greg gained significant experience putting his research knowledge to commercial use with Kraft Foods where he, among other things, worked on taking new and innovative product and process designs from a small pilot-plant scale to large scale commercialization.
Greg received his Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering with a specialization in Biomedical Engineering from Northwestern University. He then received his J.D., cum laude, from Loyola University Chicago, where he served as a member and Executive Editor of Publication of the Loyola Law Journal. He was also a Chicago Intellectual Property Colloquium Fellow from 2004-2005.
In 2015, Greg was named an Emerging Lawyer by Law Bulletin Publishing Company, a designation earned by fewer than 2 percent of all attorneys in the state.