Prior to the Association for Molecular Pathology vs Myriad there was an increasing consider that a "storm" of gene patents was coming. This concern was subtantiated by a surge of gene patent applications in the mid 1990s. Gene patent law obviously have implications for parties on both sides of the coin. The requirements stipulated by patents may influence the cost and access that patients have to diagnostic testing. However, the Myriad decisions had broader implications for the protection of intellectual property and how genetic patents are enforced (especially on a global scale). This article reviews the legal nature of gene patents, how they are enforced and how this varies on a global scale. Interestingly, it appears as if the global patent "storm" is very much focused in the USA. Could this be the result of a highly privatized health care system?