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Small particles are becoming a big business for the world's personal care products manufacturers, according to an analysis of world patent activity recently published by the IP Solutions business of Thomson Reuters. The report, "Can Nanotech Unlock the Fountain of Youth?," finds that the beauty industry has begun to make an aggressive foray into nanotechnology, using tiny molecular compounds to improve the performance of creams, sunscreens, shampoos and other personal-care products.
The report tracks unique inventions published in patent applications and granted patents from 2003 to 2009, along with trademark data from 2000 through 2009, to identify the companies and areas of nanotechnology innovation showing the sharpest growth in this industry. The findings include:
The data in the report was compiled using the Thomson Reuters Derwent World Patents Index (DWPI) database, for patent research, and SERION, for trademarks, to identify global innovation and brand activity in nanotechnology for personal care products. Patent and trademark activity are being used as a benchmark for innovation. The patent research aggregates granted documents and published applications (examined and unexamined) in 2003 and 2009. Results from both time periods were then compared to determine the overall growth trend over the past seven years.