Much has changed since 1990, when geneticist Mary Claire King first located the breast-cancer gene at the heart of the case the Supreme Court is hearing this spring. As genetic testing has entered everyday medicine, many companies offer a range of tests, and some sequence a patient’s entire genome seeking clues to disease. Figuring out who owns the rights to all those genes isn’t easy.
That is why some of the medical-testing industry’s bigger players are finding gene patents can be as much a hindrance as a help, even if they own a few themselves. Should the high court decide that individual genes are products of nature and can’t be patented, they see equal or faster growth in the already fast-growing business.
View the original article here: Gene Patents Face Reckoning