Patenting Medical and Genetic Diagnostic Methods

Patenting Medical and Genetic Diagnostic Methods

Eddy D. Ventose

This well-researched book explores in detail the issue of patenting medical and genetic diagnostic methods in the United States. It examines decisions of the Patent Office Boards of Appeal and the early courts on the question of whether medical treatments were eligible for patent protection under section 101 of the Patents Act. It then traces the legislative history of the Medical Procedures and Affordability Act that provided immunity for physicians from patent infringement suits. After considering the Supreme Court’s jurisprudence on patent eligibility, the book then comprehensively sets out how the Federal Circuit and the Supreme Court have dealt with the issue, paying close attention to the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Bilski and Prometheus.

Chapter 3: Legislative intervention

Eddy D. Ventose

Subjects: environment, biotechnology, innovation and technology, biotechnology, law - academic, health law, intellectual property law

Extract

There was an enormous outcry following the Pallin v Singer litigation. A coalition of various interest groups led by the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery quickly assembled to halt what was considered an insurgence of medical procedure patents. They lobbied Congress tirelessly to deal with the matter. The American Medical Association (AMA) criticised medical procedure patents and issued a policy document that denounced the practice amongst physicians. Before the final form of the legislation was agreed, there was considerable debate and rejections of various Bills introduced in the House of Representatives and Senate to deal with the matter. In the end a compromise Bill was agreed to, which became the Medical Procedures and Affordability Act (MPAA). This legislation led to a proliferation of academic literature. It has even been argued that the MPPA amounted to a deprivation of property for public use without compensation contrary to the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution.

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