This paper provides a series of international indicators for biodiversity and traditional knowledge within the global patent system. The indicators are based on a review of the International Patent Classification in use by patent offices worldwide and enable the analysis of a wide variety of sectors and sub-sectors of activity. Nine main sectors are reviewed ranging from agriculture to cosmetics, traditional medicines, pharmaceuticals and biotechnology. A series of sub-sectors such as stem cells, genomics and proteomics are also examined. The paper was prepared to inform debates on an international regime on access to genetic resources and benefit-sharing under the Convention on Biological Diversity. The paper is also relevant to the work of WIPO on Genetic Resources and Traditional Knowledge. A range of policy options including disclosure of origin, certificates and the introduction of Adjustable Incentive Measures (AIMs) are considered in detail. The paper is relevant for the 2010 Target and the Millennium Development Goals.