This is the blog for GW students taking Human Evolutionary Genetics. This site is for posting interesting tidbits on: the patterns and processes of human genetic variation;human origins and migration; molecular adaptations to environment, lifestyle and disease; ancient and forensic DNA analyses; and genealogical reconstructions.

GWHEG figure

GWHEG figure

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Gene patents may sound scary but soon they may no longer matter

 There has been a global concern about the issue of gene patenting and several law suites have been under discussions for quite some time now. The United States Supreme Court and the Australian federal courts have dealt with law suites about patenting genes related to breast cancer. A recent article mentions a case of gene patenting raised in Ontario Canada, which focused on the long QT syndrome, a rare disease that is caused by several mutations. As many genes has to be tested altogether in this case, this was bringing more complications to the patenting issues since the owner of the Canadian patent was trying to prevent hospitals from doing some tests. This recent article tells us that advance in technology and new types of diagnostic testing which involve whole genome sequencing and do not require chemically isolated units might help us solve the issues of patenting.

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