The Case Association For Molecular Pathology ( Amp ) V. Myriad Genetics

2152 Words Oct 27th, 2016 9 Pages
Cancer, medical costs, and genetics are all complicated and interconnected terms. With these complications, there often comes confusion or frustration. The Supreme Court case Association for Molecular Pathology (AMP) v. Myriad Genetics, Inc. is one prime example of this confusion. The case revolved around the question of gene patents, more specifically, if a human gene can be patented. Myriad Genetics, a large biotechnology firm based in Utah, had been patenting human genes since the late 1980s, using the genes to develop different medical tests.
The more famous of these genes being the two genes, BRCA1 and BRCA2, genes that are directly connected to cancer development, primarily breast cancer, in all humans. From their patents, Myriad were able to develop a monopoly on breast Cancer screening tests, and also allowed them to triple the price of the test for insurance companies. Labs and other companies who were experimenting with these genes received cease and desist orders from Myriad and left people at the mercy of Myriad. AMP began actively lobbying against Myriad when their actions became more aggressive, and eventually filed cases over seven of Myriad’s gene patents. The case eventually made it’s way to the Supreme Court after lower Court’s decisions were petitioned. The Supreme Court’s unanimous decision on the case ruled that the seven patents were not patent eligible due to the genes being naturally occurring, but the Court also said that cDNA, a different form of…

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