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For full story go to:

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/02/13/op...gewanted=print

Quote:
February 13, 2007

Op-Ed Contributor

Patenting Life

By MICHAEL CRICHTON

YOU, or someone you love, may die because of a gene patent that should never have been granted in the first place. Sound far-fetched? Unfortunately, it's only too real.

Gene patents are now used to halt research, prevent medical testing and keep vital information from you and your doctor. Gene patents slow the pace of medical advance on deadly diseases. And they raise costs exorbitantly: a test for breast cancer that could be done for $1,000 now costs $3,000.

Why? Because the holder of the gene patent can charge whatever he wants, and does. Couldn't somebody make a cheaper test? Sure, but the patent holder blocks any competitor's test. He owns the gene. Nobody else can test for it. In fact, you can't even donate your own breast cancer gene to another scientist without permission. The gene may exist in your body, but it's now private property.
 

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Originally Posted by Article View Post

Genes aren't human inventions, they are features of the natural world. As a result these patents can be used to block innovation, and hurt patient care.
yup, something like that, I tend to agree natural things, SHOULD ABSOLUTELY NOT for the most part have patent (NOT AT ALL IDEALLY) ....What THIS needs is protection from patent!!

IDEALLY: no nature nor animal, is anyones' property...

(not wanting to go into too much detail, but in brief comment thats what I think)
 

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Originally Posted by Koalaborg View Post

I read this earlier today and was baffled. how can people patent genes? whatever loophole people are using to do this needs to be changed, because this is just stupid.
Living things are patentable if they incorporate human intervention. When the Human Genome Project began, people started patenting short DNA segments, claiming that they could use these segments as probes (sequences that will "find" their complements in a long strand of DNA) in research. The number of patents granted for genes has dropped over the last few years, but patenting still interferes with about 8% of all research opportunities.
 
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