Limitations Set By Research Patents

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Summary: This article draws attention to the controversy of patenting human genes, thereby limiting who can work on research. According to the article, published on November 30, 2012, the US Supreme Court added to its docket a case concerning patents held by Myriad Genetics on genes that correlate with increased risk of hereditary breast and ovarian cancer. Scientists and doctors are challenging these patents due to their inability to conduct their own research and help patients. In their petition seeking review, the plaintiffs told the Supreme Court that "Myriad and other gene patent holders have gained the right to exclude the rest of the scientific community from examining the naturally occurring genes of every person in the United States." Additionally, the patents "prevent patients from examining their own genetic information" and "made it impossible to obtain second opinions."

My Opinion: I found this article very interesting because it highlights one of the main problems with research - the race to find the answer first. In this race, people often forget the overall intention of what they are doing, which is to help others achieve greater and better health. In this case, it is my opinion that Myriad Genetics has been corrupted by their drive for money and prestige in finding a cure, forgetting that they are inhibiting others from achieving the same goal. The competition has become so severe that people's lives hang in the balance and everyone's main concern is rights to research, but everyone has the right to live as well. I believe that the Supreme court should rule in favor of the plantiffs.

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This page contains a single entry by stei0683 published on November 26, 2012 10:34 AM.

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