Myriad Genetics

Supreme Court orders reconsideration of breast cancer gene patent decision

Yesterday, the Supreme Court vacated Association for Molecular Pathology v. Myriad Genetics and remanded the case for further consideration in light of last week's Prometheus decision, which stated that the laws of nature are unpatentable. The Myriad case concerns the patentability of the BRCA1 and BRCA2 breast cancer genes. » Read more

3 Comments

Gene patenting and free software: a breakthrough

Last week, to the surprise of patent lawyers and the biotechnology industry, advocates for technological freedom won an enormous victory against socially harmful distortions of patent law.  The Federal District Court for the Southern District of New York held invalid patents owned by Myriad Genetics on diagnostic testing for genetic susceptibility to the most common hereditary forms of breast and ovarian cancer.  By "patenting" the right to determine whether the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes are present in the relevant mutated form in a women's genome, Myriad Genetics has been able to exclude all other laboratories from conducting the test.  Patients and their insurers have paid much more, and women and their families have waited crucial weeks longer than necessary for information relevant to treatment and potentially affecting survival.   » Read more

24 Comments