The defense takes the field:
Sequencing the genome yields information that is fantastically important, but it does not tell you the exact location of the gene and most importantly what function is specified by the gene or by a mutated disease causing gene. I can understand why one should not be allowed to patent DNA without having any knowledge about its function, but an isolated DNA where the function of its products has been determined is a different story - here, an invention has been made. Moreover, if you figure out a direct link or an association between a gene sequence and a cause for or if you figure out the correlations or associations between a gene sequence and an increased risk for a specific disease, this discovery can be used to develop diagnostics and drugs that help people. I do not see any reason why a patent should not be awarded for such inventions.
- From the Declaration of Joseph Schlessinger, PhD, 21 December 2009
…without the promise of a period of market exclusivity provided by patents and the infusion of venture and risk capital derived therefrom, companies that capitalize on innovation simply would not be created. Their products would not be brought to market, to the clinic, and most importantly, to patients. This of course, holds true for companies such as Myriad and its BRCA1/2 diagnostic tests.
- From the Declaration of Philip R. Reilly, MD, JD, 21 December 2009
Association For Molecular Pathology et al v. United States Patent and Trademark Office et al UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK, Robert W. Sweet, presiding