Michael Shuster is a partner in Goodwin’s Life Sciences group, providing strategic intellectual property advice to biotechnology, chemical, pharmaceutical, and other life sciences companies. He handles an array of IP matters – including patent prosecution, portfolio analysis, due diligence, litigation, and opinion work – for clients ranging from startups to established biotechnology companies, venture capital firms, and research universities and hospitals. He also provides IP evaluation and counseling for companies raising and investing growth capital, executing strategic partnerships and M&A transactions, and going public.

Leveraging a background in science, Mr. Shuster has advised extensively on IP issues related to immunotherapy, antibody technologies, microbiome-based technologies, ag biotechnology, biologics, gene therapy, therapeutic vaccines, synthetic biology, small molecule therapeutics, and drug formulations, among other complex technologies.

Prior to joining Goodwin in 2019, Mr. Shuster co-headed the Life Sciences group at Fenwick & West LLP. Before attending law school, he was part of a Columbia University team, led by Professor Eric Kandel, that conducted research into the mechanisms underlying short-term memory storage. Kandel was awarded the 2000 Nobel Prize in Medicine for a body of work that included that project.





Recent matters in which Mr. Shuster served as IP lead include:

  • Celenex’s $100 million acquisition by Amicus*
  • Seres Therapeutics’ $1.9 billion partnership with Nestle Health Sciences*
  • Crescendo Biosciences’ $270 million acquisition by Myriad Genetics*
  • ProNAi Therapeutics’ (now Sierra Oncology) $158 million initial public offering*
  • Seres Therapeutics’ $140 million IPO*
  • Bolt Threads’ Series A and B financings, which raised a combined $40 million*
  • Google Ventures’ investment in Forty Seven's $75 million Series A financing*
  • Gritstone Oncology’s IPO, strategic collaboration with Bluebird Bio, and $97.5 million Series B financing*
  • PACT Pharma’s $95 million Series B financing*
  • Pionyr Immunotherapeutics’ $62 million Series B financing*
  • GRAIL’s definitive agreement to combine with Cirina*
  • Bio-Rad’s acquisition of RainDance Technologies*
  • BioPharmX’s $10 million IPO*

* Denotes experience prior to joining Goodwin.

Professional Activities

Mr. Shuster serves on the advisory board of CalBIO, the biotech division of the California Technology Counsel. He is also a co-instructor of “A Life Scientist’s Guide to Intellectual Property” at the University of California, San Francisco, and regularly lectures about intellectual property law subjects. Formerly, he was chair of the IP section of the Barristers Club of San Francisco.


Mr. Shuster has been recognized by The Best Lawyers in America Best Lawyers for his work in Biotechnology and Life Sciences, Patent Law Practice 2022-2023.

From 2017 to 2022, Mr. Shuster was commended by Chambers USA for his expertise in life sciences IP/patent litigation. In 2018, The Legal 500 named him one of the United States’ leading patent prosecutors, a recognition he also earned in 2014. He was also recognized among California’s leading patent prosecutors by IAM Patent 1000 in 2021, 2018 and2017, with the most recent guide praising him as a “startup sage.” Additionally, he was named among the Top 25 Biotech Lawyers in California in 2011 and one of the Top 25 Intellectual Property Portfolio Managers in 2009 and 2012 by the Daily Journal. He is also consistently recognized as a Life Sciences Star for his outstanding patent work in Euromoney's LMG Life Sciences guide and as an IP Star by Managing Intellectual Property, along with being repeatedly honored as a Northern California Super Lawyer.

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J.D., 1997
University of San Francisco School of Law
(cum laude)
Ph.D., 1986
Columbia University, The Department of Physiology and Molecular Biophysics
B.A., Biophysics, 1981
Brandeis University
(magna cum laude)



U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO)
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