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Australian High Court Rules Against Myriad's BRCA1 Patent Claims

Australian High Court Rules Against Myriad's BRCA1 Patent Claims

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – The High Court of Australia has ruled that a nucleic acid isolated from the body encoding a BRCA1 protein and harboring variations that confer increased risk of breast and ovarian cancer is not a patentable invention as defined by the country's laws.

The decision in D'Arcy v Myriad Genetics impacts three patent claims held by diagnostics firm Myriad related to its BRCA genetic test. "An isolated nucleic acid, coding for the BRCA1 protein, with specified variations, is not a manner of manufacture," the high court said. "While the invention claimed might be, in a formal sense, a product of human action, it was the existence of the information stored in the relevant sequences that was an essential element of the invention as claimed."

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