Court to Reconsider Gene Patents
A federal appeals court on Friday will reconsider whether isolated human genes can be patented, in a case that could reshape how biotechnology companies develop sophisticated screening tests and treatments for cancer and other diseases.
The hearing marks the latest legal twist in the fight over a series of Myriad Genetics Inc. patents relating to two genes. Mutations of the genes can signal that a woman faces greater risk of developing breast cancer or ovarian cancer. Myriad’s patents allow it to be the exclusive U.S. commercial provider of genetic screening tests for the diseases.