The Supreme Court announced on Friday that it will consider a legal challenge to a patent on a breast cancer gene held by the firm Myriad Genetics. The case could have broad implications for the future of medical diagnostic techniques.
In March, the Supreme Court ordered an appeals court to reconsider a 2011 decision holding that genetic material could be patented once it has been “isolated” from the human body. At the time, the Supreme Court had just rejected patents on medical diagnostic techniques, and the high court wanted the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit to re-consider its previous ruling in light of this new precedent.
If the Supreme Court upholds the ruling, will we have to pay a license fee for the right to use our genes?