SUPREME COURT: Big Biotech Can't Patent Your DNA

The Supreme Court ruled Thursday that our natural DNA can’t be patented, in what the influential SCOTUSBlog called “a significant patent ruling for the biotechnology industry.”

The high court did stike some middle ground by ruling that synthetic DNA can be patented.

“A naturally occurring DNA segment is a product of nature and not patent eligible merely because it has been isolated, but cDNA [synthetic DNA] is patent eligible because it can be patented,” according to the court ruling written by Justice Clarence Thomas.

Utah biotech company Myriad Genetics is at the centre of the patent dispute. As strange as it might sound, the company owns the patents to two so-called isolated genes that show women have increased chances of getting breast cancer.

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