Myriad v Ambry: the BRCA battle continues

MaryAnne Armstrong, Ph.D. for Life Science Intellectual Property Review

On June 13, 2013, the US Supreme Court handed down a seminal decision for the biopharma industry in Association for Molecular Pathology v Myriad Genetics, Inc, 133 S. Ct. 2107 (2013) (Myriad). In the Myriad decision the court held that naturally occurring nucleic acid sequences are not patent-eligible subject matter because they are products of nature.

In addition, claiming nucleic acids as being “isolated” will not render the nucleic acids patent-eligible. The court, however, left open the question of whether claims directed to methods of using the nucleic acids may be patentable.

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