Thursday, June 13, 2013

Nobody Can Own Your Genes

Great news today from the Supreme Court, which held unanimously that companies cannot patent naturally occurring genes.

Incidentally, this is a good argument for letting complex legal matters work their way through the courts very slowly. Back when these genetic variants (BRCA1 and BRCA2) were first identified, the discovery of a new gene seemed like a technical wonder, and linking a newly discovered genetic variant to a particular disease seemed astonishing. No wonder patents were granted. But now that a hundred new genetic variants are discovered every day, we view the matter more rationally.

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