What is patentable product?

Supreme Court to Rule on Human Gene Patenting  February 9, 2013 – 09:00 pm
Reason 1: Most products are

This spring, the Supreme Court will take on the issue of gene patenting in Association for Molecular Pathology v. Myriad Genetics. Today, over 40, 000 patents are currently held on roughly 20 percent of all human genes.

Cardozo Professor Daniel Ravicher is co-counsel with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), who is arguing that genes are products of nature and should not be patented. The Supreme Court will rule on the question of whether isolated genes are “products of nature” that are not eligible for patent protection, or if they are “human-made inventions” that may be patented.

In the spring of 2009, the Southern District Court of New York invalidated Myriad’s patents on two breast cancer genes. The Court held that Myriad’s claims to “isolated” DNA molecules were non-patentable because these molecules constituted products of nature.

Following this decision, Myriad appealed and the case went to the Court of Appeals, which ruled in favor of Myriad. A petition for certiorari was filed and the Supreme Court vacated the Court of Appeals decision and remanded the case for consideration in light of the Supreme Court’s March 2012 ruling in Mayo v. Prometheus Laboratories. On remand, the Court of Appeals once again upheld Myriad’s patents on the grounds that isolating the gene means that it is non-naturally occurring.

Source: The Cardozo Jurist

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