Xiaozhen (Shawn) Yu

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About Shawn

Shawn focuses his practice on developing business-oriented patent strategies for biotechnology, pharmaceutical and medical device companies in the US and abroad. This work includes drafting and prosecuting patent applications, preparing freedom to operate opinions and counseling clients on Food and Drug Administration exclusivity strategies. Shawn also has represented many prominent life sciences investors in intellectual property due diligence matters for numerous financing transactions, including licensing, venture capital financings, initial public offerings and M&A transactions. He also has worked on multiple patent litigation matters before the US Patent and Trademark Office – including inter partes review and post-grant review proceedings – and provided litigation support in district court cases.

Shawn has extensive experience in the life sciences industry, including gene therapies, cell therapies, small-molecule therapeutics, diagnostics, monoclonal antibodies, messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA) therapeutics, antisense therapeutics, clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR) technologies, metal chemistries, medical devices, digital polymerase chain reaction (dPCR), oncology, immunology, stem cells, vaccines and biosensors.

Before joining Cooley, Shawn was an associate in the Washington, DC, office of Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati.

Shawn earned his JD from Georgetown University Law Center, where he served as executive editor of the Georgetown Journal of International Law. Before law school, Shawn was a postdoctoral fellow at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), where he engineered biosensors to measure metal concentrations in vivo and developed biophysical techniques to study protein structure. He also worked as a summer intern at a San Diego-based medical device company before joining the NIH. During graduate school, Shawn collaborated with researchers at the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital on minimizing the side effects of an anti-cancer drug.


Georgetown University Law Center
JD, 2016

University of Mississippi
PhD, 2010, Chemistry

Zhejiang University
BE, 2005, Chemical Engineering