Jeff Carter-Johnson

Adjunct Professor; Special Projects Coordinator
Law College Building
648 N. Shaw Lane Rm 425
East Lansing, MI 48824-1300

  • Biography

    Jeff Carter-Johnson is a scientist who was drawn to law because of the interrelationship between science and society. He holds a Ph.D. in Microbiology at the University of Virginia, where his research was in the fields of virology and molecular biology. His interest in basic research and the applications of the innovations on which he worked led him to study law, specifically intellectual property law—an area of law specially developed to incentivize innovation lead to him earning a J.D from Washington University School of Law in St. Louis.

    Today, his research areas are an outgrowth of those initial interests and he works on technology transfer from universities, i.e. how innovations developed at universities are commercialized, and also on the impact of intellectual property law in heavily regulated areas such as the food and agriculture industries.

  • Courses

    Biotechnology Law and Food Products
    This course explores the impact of biotechnology on food production and food safety. After an introduction to biotechnology and the breadth of biotechnology-created foods available, the class will focus on the regulation of food safety and its environmental impact, both in the U.S. and internationally. Students will discuss the impact of public perception on the biotechnology agriculture and transgenic animals industries. No scientific or other class pre-requisites are required.

    Survey of Intellectual Property in Agriculture
    This course is a survey of the intellectual property concepts that are important in the Agriculture Industry. Beginning with an introduction to intellectual property generally, the class will focus on utility patents, plant patents, and Plant Variety Act certificates, including international perspectives. Trade secrets and trademarks will also be discussed. Once students are grounded in the applicable intellectual property law, the class will turn its focus to the impact that intellectual property rights have on access to food products and food safety. No scientific or other class pre-requisites are required.