High Court

SCOTUS: You Can’t Patent Genes

The Supreme Court ruled Thursday that human genes can’t be patented, marking a victory for women at risk of breast and ovarian cancer and doctors and geneticists who argued that the patents would disrupt important biotechnology research. The ruling stemmed from a Utah company, Myriad Genetics, which held an exclusive patent on the genes, BRCA1 and BRCA2, that indicate whether a woman was at a higher risk for developing breast or ovarian cancer. The court said that products of nature like genes, unlike invented products, are not eligible for patents.