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Haberny, Sandra

Sandra L. Haberny, Ph.D.

Direct Tel: +1 (213) 443-3438
Los Angeles
Tel: +1 213 443 3000 Fax: +1 213 443 3100

Sandy is a Partner in Quinn Emanuel’s Los Angeles office. She has an extensive patent litigation and trade secret practice with an emphasis in the life sciences. Sandy specializes in resolving complex business disputes both on the papers and at trial. She also advises on due diligence and pre-litigation strategy. Sandy has litigated, advised clients, and tried cases in a range of complex technologies including molecular diagnostics in the cancer, transplant, and prenatal fields, DNA sequencing, synthetic  biology, oligonucleotide synthesis, PCR-based technologies, CRISPR, monoclonal antibody therapies, CAR-T and other cell-based therapies, RNA interference, small molecule compounds and drugs, liquefied natural gas-based energy sources, and others. Sandy is also admitted to practice before the United States Patent and Trademark Office, and has experience prosecuting patents, conducting inter partes review and post grant review proceedings, and counseling clients on patent portfolio development and enforcement strategy.

Sandy is active in the legal community. She has held officer positions in the Orange County Bar Association’s Intellectual Property and Technology section, is a member of other intellectual property and women attorney groups, and speaks regularly at seminars and law schools.

Sandy also maintains an active pro bono practice, and is a member of the civil rights pro bono panel of the Central District of California, which appoints counsel to represent pro se litigants for the purpose of trial.

Sandy received her M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Molecular Pharmacology from the New York University School of Medicine. While in graduate school, she earned a highly competitive NIH Pre-doctoral Individual National Research Service Award, and published several papers in the fields of molecular neuroscience and pharmacology.


  • Natera, Inc.
  • Array Biopharma, Inc.
  • Twist Bioscience Corp.
  • Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard
  • Ariosa Diagnostics, Inc.
  • Guardant Health, Inc.
  • Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
  • NantKwest, Inc.
  • Myriad Genetics, Inc.
  • Sempra Energy, Inc.
  • Max-Planck-Gesellschaft zur Förderung der Wissenschaften e. V.
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research
  • University of Massachusetts
  • University of Pennsylvania
  • Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
  • CareDx, Inc. v. Natera, Inc. Represent Natera as both plaintiff and defendant in patent litigation involving non-invasive, cell-free DNA-based testing for kidney transplant rejection as well as false advertising.  Secured a complete victory in defense of Natera in a high-profile summary judgment ruling, after an evidentiary hearing, that invalidated all of the patents CareDx asserted for lack of patentable subject matter under 35 U.S.C. section 101.
  • Natera, Inc. v. Inivata, Inc. Represent Natera as plaintiff in patent litigation involving non-invasive, cell-free DNA-based testing for cancer.
  • Loxo Oncology, Inc., et al. v. Array Biopharma, Inc. Represented Array Biopharma in a trade secret misappropriation action relating to small molecule kinase inhibitor drugs. Obtained a favorable settlement after an evidentiary hearing in connection with Array’s motion for preliminary injunction.
  • Agilent Technologies, Inc. v. Twist Bioscience Corp. Represented Twist in defense of a trade secret misappropriation action relating to technologies for oligonucleotide synthesis, which ended in a favorable settlement shortly before trial.
  • Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard. Represent the Broad Institute in reexamination and interference matters before the USPTO in connection with its CRISPR patent portfolio. Obtained a denial of institution, which secured a complete victory for Broad in a post grant review proceeding petitioned by Benson Hill, Inc.
  • NantKwest, Inc. and Brink Biologics, Inc v. Merck KGaA, et al. Represented NantKwest and Brink in arbitration over a licensing dispute. Obtained a favorable settlement early in the case.
  • Ariosa Diagnostics, Inc. v. Sequenom, Inc. Represented Ariosa Diagnostics in a patent infringement suit, successfully obtaining a summary judgment ruling invalidating Sequenom’s patent for failing to claim patent-eligible subject matter under 35 U.S.C. section 101. The decision gave Ariosa a complete victory and was among the first district court rulings invalidating a diagnostic patent in the life sciences field on Section 101 grounds. Sandy further obtained a highly publicized affirmance of the decision by the Federal Circuit.
  • University of Utah v. Max-Planck-Gesellschaft zur Foerderung der Wissenschaften, e.V., et al. Represented the defendants in an action that sought correction of inventorship on ten foundational patents in the field of RNA interference as well as damages pursuant to various state law claims; obtained a summary judgment ruling that defeated all of plaintiff’s claims, resulting in a final judgment in favor of defendants and a complete victory in the case.
  • NantKwest, Inc. v. Lee. Represented NantKwest before the district court and the Federal Circuit in a 35 U.S.C. section 145 action relating to natural killer cell-based therapies for cancer. The case also involved a highly publicized en banc ruling by the Federal Circuit rejecting the USPTO’s argument that applicants who appeal an examiner’s rejection to a district court must pay the agency’s legal fees regardless of outcome. 
  • Illumina, Inc. v. Ariosa Diagnostics, Inc. Represented Ariosa Diagnostics through litigation and at trial in a patent infringement suit relating to sample preparations and molecular diagnostics testing and sequencing.
  • Verinata Health, Inc. v. Ariosa Diagnostics. Represented Ariosa Diagnostics through litigation, at trial, and in several appeals including interlocutory appeals and appeals of inter partes review decisions in a patent infringement suit relating to non-invasive molecular screening tests for fetal chromosomal abnormalities.
  • Foundation Medicine, Inc. v. Guardant Health, Inc. Represented Guardant Health in patent litigation involving liquid biopsies, which are blood-based molecular diagnostics for cancer. The case settled favorably before trial.
  • Kite Pharma v. Sloan Kettering Institute for Cancer Research. Successfully defended Sloan Kettering and its exclusive licensee, Juno Therapeutics, obtaining a complete victory in inter partes review proceedings in which Kite sought to invalidate all claims of Sloan Kettering’s patents covering a construct for a chimeric T cell receptor for the treatment of B-cell cancers, such as leukemia and lymphomas.
  • Max-Planck-Gesellschaft zur Foerderung der Wissenschaften, e.V., et al. v. Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research, et al. Represented Alnylam and the Max Planck Society in a complex patent and business dispute concerning rights to fundamental technology covered in two families of patent applications in the field of RNA interference.
  • Genentech v. University of Pennsylvania. Represented the University of Pennsylvania in patent litigation involving the monoclonal antibody breast cancer treatment Herceptin. Obtained a favorable settlement on the eve of trial.
  • INOVA Diagnostics, Inc. v. Euro-Diagnostica AB et al. Represented INOVA Diagnostics in patent litigation involving diagnostic tests relating to rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Sanchez Ritchie v. Sempra Energy. Defended Sempra Energy in a federal case in the Southern District of California alleging business torts, fraud, and RICO violations. 
  • University of California, Berkeley, School of Law
  • (J.D., 2008)
    • Berkeley Technology Law Journal
  • New York University School of Medicine, Sackler Institute of Biomedical Sciences
  • (Ph.D., Molecular Pharmacology, 2005)
  • (M.S., Molecular Pharmacology, 2002)
  • University of Maryland Baltimore County
  • (B.S., cum laude, Biological Sciences, 1998)
    • Phi Beta Kappa
    • Dean’s List
  • The State Bar of California
  • United States Court of Appeals:
    • Federal Circuit
  • United States District Court:
    • Central District of California
    • Northern District of California
    • Southern District of California
    • District of Colorado
  • United States Patent and Trademark Office
  • Spanish
  • Irell & Manella LLP:
    • Associate, 2008-2017
    • Counsel, 2017-2018
  • Named as a 2023 Southern California Super Lawyer, Intellectual Property Litigation by SuperLawyers
  • Named as a 2022 Southern California Super Lawyer, Intellectual Property Litigation by SuperLawyers
  • Selected as a 2018 southern California Rising Star, Intellectual Property Litigation by SuperLawyers
  • Haberny, S., “Departing Faculty: Protecting University IP, Avoiding Legal Disputes, and Preserving Funding,” presented on August 8, 2016 for Tech Transfer Central’s Technology Transfer Tactics Program.
  • Haberny, S. and Fraser, J., “Collaborative Research, Licensing, and Inter-Institutional Agreements: Lessons Learned from Real-Life Legal Cases,” presented on May 18, 2016 for Tech Transfer Central’s Technology Transfer Tactics Program.
  • Haberny, S. and Burton, L., “Multifront War: Winning Your Case in District Court, the Patent Office, and Beyond,” presented on February 9, 2016 for the Berkeley Center for Law and Technology’s lecture series.
  • Haberny, S. and Abernethy, C., “Overview of a Patent Case,” presented on April 23, 2015 for the Berkeley Center for Law and Technology’s lecture series.
  • Gulbrandsen, C.E., Ademany, S., Haberny, S., Sheasby, J., "Patent Reform Should Not Leave Innovation Behind," 8 J. Marshall Rev. Intell. Prop. L. 328 (2009).
  • Haberny, S., Sheasby. J., "Recent Trends in Legislative Patent Reform," presented at the November, 2008 Conference for the National Association for College and University Attorneys.
  • Pan, Y., Berman, Y., Haberny, S., Meller, E., Carr, K.D., "Synthesis, protein levels, activity, and phosphorylation state of tyrosine hydroxylase in mesoaccumbens and nigrostriatal dopamine pathways of chronically food-restricted rats," Brain Res. 1122(1):135-42 (2006).
  • Haberny, S.L., Carr, K.D., "Comparison of basal and D-1 dopamine receptor agonist-stimulated neuropeptide gene expression in caudate-putamen and nucleus accumbens of ad libitum fed and food-restricted rats," Brain Res Mol Brain Res. 141(2):121-27 (2005).
  • Haberny, S.L., Carr, K.D., "Food restriction increases NMDA receptor-mediated calcium-calmodulin kinase II and NMDA receptor/extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2-mediated cyclic AMP response element-binding protein phosphorylation in nucleus accumbens upon D-1 dopamine receptor stimulation in rats," Neuroscience 132(4):1035-43 (2005).
  • Haberny, S.L., Berman, Y., Meller, E., Carr, K.D., "Chronic food restriction increases D-1 dopamine receptor agonist-induced phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 and cyclic AMP response element-binding protein in caudate-putamen and nucleus accumbens," Neuroscience 125(1):289-98 (2004).


  • Orange County Bar Association
  • Intellectual Property Owners Association
  • Association of University Technology Managers