Gene patent tossed out (for breast cancer)

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by Shivetya, Mar 30, 2010.

  1. Shivetya macrumors 65816

    Jan 16, 2008

    Patents on genes associated with hereditary breast and ovarian cancer are invalid, ruled a New York federal court today. The precedent-setting ruling marks the first time a court has found patents on genes unlawful and calls into question the validity of patents now held on approximately 2,000 human genes.
    Well I was wondering when these patents would be struck. Its good they are being reviewed, the question becomes. Will it be appealed, at what level, and will such cases reach the Supreme Court. It also means we can hope to see other challenges against genes held by any organization, non-profit or not.

  2. thejadedmonkey macrumors 604


    May 28, 2005
    Excellent. We were just having a class discussion about how absurd this situation has become, it's nice to see that someone else realizes it as well.
  3. stonyc macrumors 65816


    Feb 15, 2005
  4. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus


    Jan 9, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    I'm glad to see this, too... allowing a company to patent a gene that turns out to be crucial to a disease process has the potential to give them a chokehold on everyone who suffers from that disease, particularly if that gene turns out to be the only or one of few sites of possible intervention.
  5. Rodimus Prime macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

    Oct 9, 2006
    About damn time that happen. Many of these companies patent this crap and had no intention of ever really looking into it. They just did not want the competitors to do it.
  6. niuniu macrumors 68020


    Mar 29, 2009
    A man of the people. The right sort of people.
    Hopefully we'll see this spill over into other areas like technology where an applicant to file to circumvent a patent for use in equipment that will be used to benefit humanity, such as in energy or medicine. I bet there's a lot of dirty stuff going on that's stopping innovation filtering through and saving lives at a high level.
  7. bobertoq macrumors 6502a

    Feb 29, 2008
    But why would they bother working with them if they couldn't have exclusive rights? /s

    I find it absurd that genes could be patented in the first place...
  8. 184550 Guest

    May 8, 2008
    Sounds like the basis of a Michael Chrichton novel.

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