Yale University and one of its researchers have agreed to pay $1.5 million to settle allegations that they failed to share royalties from patents for inventions the researcher developed when he worked jointly for Yale and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, the Justice Department announced Thursday.
The payment will settle a lawsuit brought against Yale and Dr. John Krystal under the federal False Claims Act, which aims to hold individuals and entities accountable for defrauding the federal government.
The settlement resolves claims that, beginning in 2006, Dr. Krystal and four co-inventors applied for several patents related to the use of intranasal ketamine to treat depression and suicidal ideation. Dr. Krystal allegedly assigned his patent payments to Yale and only in 2017 informed the veterans’ agency about the patents. The Justice Department news release asserts that Yale and the researcher earned more than $3 million from the patents.
“Universities and their professors must properly disclose and share royalties on inventions they discover while working for the government,” Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Brian M. Boynton, head of the Justice Department’s Civil Division, said in the news release. “The department will ensure that those who benefit from government funding and resources properly compensate the taxpayers.”