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Post-Myriad Legal and Policy Considerations for Patenting Genetic Inventions


  • March 11, 2019

Karen Carroll and Sharad Bijanki wrote a guest article in IPWatchdog on the current patent landscape for biologics and other genetic inventions. 

"As the science has rapidly evolved, so too has the issue of patentability," Karen and Sharad wrote. "In 2005, growing interest around the topic prompted researchers to further characterize gene patents and explain ethical concerns over them in the Journal of Community Genetics. The authors described how gene patents typically covered diagnostics, compositions of matter and functional uses, but they voiced concerns over whether the patents would hinder additional research."

"Those concerns did not reduce interest in patenting genetic material—by 2013, more than 4,300 human genes had been patented, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine," they continued. "However, that same year, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a landmark decision limiting the patentability of genetic inventions, and in so doing provided new parameters that life sciences companies, universities, researchers and the courts are still grappling with today. Despite the limitations on patenting genetic inventions, with a careful analysis of that decision and the case law that has followed, certain claims remain patentable. But there are also important policy implications to consider as this area keeps evolving."

You can read their full article hereIPWatchdog is one of the top legal blogs in the country and a leading resource for intellectual property news.