Conferences & Symposia

The Future of Genetic Disease Diagnosis and Treatment: Do Patents Matter?


Friday, April 2, 2010

This year's Journal of Business and Techology Law Spring Symposium explores the implications of intellectual property, particularly patent exclusivity, on the medical diagnosis and treatment of gene-based diseases. This consideration includes the concept of patentable subject matter, examining the patentability of genes and research methods, including genetic diagnostic kits.

Earlier this term, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments in Bilski v. Kappos, which challenged the patentability of certain business methods. This case impacts method patents directed to life sciences research and diagnostic testing, as seen recently in Prometheus Laboratories, Inc. v. Mayo Collaborative Services. At the heart of the Bilski case is the Federal Circuit's machine-or-transformation test and Congress%EF%BF%BDs intent to allow patents protection for methods of conducting business.

A related concept to the subject matter patentability issue in Bilski is the debate over the patentability of genes. Recently, the ACLU filed suit against Myriad Genetics, challenging the company's patents on two genes linked to breast and ovarian cancers. Although the case is still pending in the lower courts, many have already recognized the broad implications this case will likely have on the biotechnology industry and genetics-based medical research in light of the thousands of gene patents issued since the sequencing of the human genome.

The symposium gathers experts from academia and professional and regulatory institutions to discuss the implications of these two landmark cases poised to change the future of biotechnology patents.

Agenda

9:30%EF%BF%BD9:45 a.m.
Opening Remarks
Professor Lawrence Sung
Symposium Moderator
Professor and Director, Intellectual Property Program
University of Maryland School of Law


9:45%EF%BF%BD11:30 a.m.
Panel #1: Implications of ACLU-Myriad on the Patentability of Genes

1:30%EF%BF%BD3:15 p.m.
Panel #2: Bilski and the Future of Medical Diagnostic Inventions

3:15%EF%BF%BD3:30 p.m.
Closing Remarks from Professor Sung

Panelists:

Dr. Joann Boughman
Executive Vice President, The American Society of Human Genetics

Professor Kevin E. Collins
Indiana University Maurer School of Law

Professor Timothy Holbrook
Emory University School of Law

Professor Christopher Holman
University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law

Professor Eileen M. Kane
Penn State Dickinson School of Law

Professor Janice M. Mueller
University of Pittsburgh School of Law

Professor Joshua D. Sarnoff
American University, Washington College of Law


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500 W. Baltimore Street, Baltimore, MD 21201-1786 PHONE: (410) 706-7214 FAX: (410) 706-4045 / TDD: (410) 706-7714

Copyright © 2014, University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law. All Rights Reserved