Supreme Court: Human Genes Can’t Be Patented

Supreme Court: Human Genes Can’t Be Patented

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In a closely watched case, the Supreme Court threw out a lower court ruling allowing human genes to be patented, a topic of enormous interest to cancer researchers, patients and drug makers.

The Court overturned patents belonging to Myriad Genetics on genes linked to increased risk of breast and ovarian cancer. Scientists say genes carrying the secrets of life should not be exploited for gain; companies argue that a patent is a reward for years of expensive research that moves science forward.

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