Sunday, July 08, 2012

Which way Myriad?

Are patent claims to isolated genes now in the position of the Cape Cod kayaker, as patent lawyers in wet suits look on?

From Yale's "Information Society Project" on the "vacate and remand" in the Myriad case:

While the Prometheus case deals with patent processes that contain a law of nature, versus Myriad’s isolation of a gene sequence from nature, the Court’s evident concern with maintaining the proper balance of the patent system, by encouraging diagnostic research and ensuring that information derived from nature is not monopolized to prevent valuable discoveries, is certain to play an important role in the ultimate conclusion of the Myriad case.

One judge at the CAFC had found that the claims to the isolated BRCA DNA to be patent-eligible based on the isolated DNA having “markedly different characteristics” from chromosomal DNA. Claims to a method of screening DNA for BRCA mutations were patent ineligible and claims to a method of drug screening were patent eligible.

The patentability of isolated DNA was not at issue in Prometheus.

Could the folks patenting isolated genes be facing a "Great White" moment?

Photo from The terrifying moment a kayaker spots the dorsal fin of an approaching 14ft great white SHARK


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