Cullen N. Pendleton, Ph.D. focuses his practice on representing clients in the biotechnology, pharmaceutical, and consumer products industries. On their behalf, he handles patent litigation and other proceedings, and extracts additional value for their products through licensing arrangements. Dr. Pendleton’s clients praise his ability to understand their technological innovations rapidly and expose flaws in their opponents’ positions, qualities that stem from his deep experience in corporate and academic research laboratories in both the physical and life sciences. His proven technical acumen, insightful legal analysis, and oral and written advocacy skills have regularly helped produce positive outcomes for clients during all phases of litigation.

Dr. Pendleton was selected for inclusion in the 2012-2014 Illinois Rising Stars® lists, featuring outstanding young attorneys in the state.


  • Successfully obtained summary judgment of non-infringement for the defendant on all asserted claims from three patents covering next-generation nucleic acid sequencing technologies.
  • Successfully represented the plaintiff in a six-week jury trial, arguing the infringement of patents covering erythropoietic proteins and methods of their manufacture.
  • Successfully represented the defendant in an appeal from an interference decision.
  • Represented the defendant in a three-week jury trial concerning the ownership and infringement of patents covering next-generation nucleic acid sequencing technologies.

Dr. Pendleton has represented clients in diverse areas of technology, including:

  • Biotechnology
  • Materials science
  • Electronics and Computer Technology
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Consumer Products
  • Mechanical Devices


Dr. Pendleton obtained his J.D., with honors, in 2004 from The University of Chicago Law School, where he was the Class of 1951 Scholar. He was awarded a John M. Olin Fellowship in Law and Economics, was a semifinalist in the Hinton Moot Court Competition, won the Thomas R. Mulroy Prize for Appellate Advocacy, and served on the staff of the Chicago Journal of International Law.

Dr. Pendleton earned his Ph.D. in Microbiology from the University of Texas at Austin. His research focused on the mechanism of transformation caused by the v-rel oncoprotein expressed by reticuloendotheliosis virus strain T, and involved the isolation and characterization of transcription control elements in the promoter of ch-IAPI, an inhibitor of apoptosis. He received his undergraduate degree in Biology from the University of Houston, magna cum laude, where he was a National Merit Scholar.


  • The University of Chicago Law School, J.D., with honors
  • University of Texas at Austin, Ph.D., Microbiology
  • University of Houston, B.S., magna cum laude, Biology


  • Illinois
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Federal Circuit
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Texas


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  • Member, Trial Bar for the Northern District of Illinois
  • Member, Intellectual Property Law Association of Chicago
  • Member, Illinois State Bar Association


  • Enzo Life Sciences v. Illumina (for Illumina, D. Del.)
  • Illumina v. Complete Genomics (for Illumina, N.D. Cal.)
  • GeoTag v. Classified Ventures (for Classified Ventures, E.D. Tex.)
  • Illumina v. Complete Genomics (for Illumina, S.D. Cal.)
  • Webvention v. Weatherford International (for Weatherford International; E.D. Tex.)

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