The following is an edited excerpt.
The outbreak of a novel coronavirus in the Middle East is raising worldwide health concerns and triggering questions about the ability of organizations to patent the genetic sequences of diseases for profit.
The virus was identified three months after the Erasmus Medical Center in Rotterdam, Netherlands, acquired a sample of it. The center has taken out a patent on the virus’s genetic sequence.
While Saudi officials and the WHO have said the patent will impede the process of containing the virus and developing treatments, Erasmus has defended the move.
Read the full story here: Can you patent a disease?