01 November 2013

Myriad again

Another gene patents article, this time 'Patently a Problem? Human Gene Patenting and Its Ethical and Practical Implications' by Stephanie Constand in (2013) 13(1) QUT Law Review 100-125 which comments
The issue of gene patenting has received renewed interest with the recent decisions of both the Supreme Court of the United States and the Federal Court of Australia in regards to the patentability of isolated genetic material. The latter case, Cancer Voices Australia v Myriad Genetics Inc, upheld the validity of a patent over the isolated BRCA1 gene and highlighted the wider implications of gene patenting within Australia. This article examines the legal issues arising from that judgment with respect to the ‘manner of manufacture’ requirement for patentability. Additionally, it analyses the ethical consequences of gene patenting and the impact of the monopolistic market control that is facilitated by patents upon the delivery of biogenetic healthcare services, industry investment and the dissemination of research results. It will further consider community concerns regarding limitations in access to genetic testing and treatment and will suggest means of redressing such concerns.