• Federal Circuit Reaffirms Patent Eligibility of Isolated DNA Molecules
  • November 26, 2012 | Author: Paul M. Rivard
  • Law Firm: Banner & Witcoff, Ltd. - Washington Office
  • On August 16, 2012, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit issued its decision in Association for Molecular Pathology v. Myriad Genetics, Inc. (“Myriad II”) following a remand from the U.S. Supreme Court. The Supreme Court asked the appellate court to reconsider its July 2011 panel decision (“Myriad I”) following the high court’s ruling in Mayo Collaborative Services v. Prometheus Laboratories, Inc. (“Mayo”). In Mayo, the Supreme Court held certain claims to methods of determining a dosage of a drug were not patent-eligible because they impermissibly preempted a natural law. The remand reopened the question of patent eligibility of Myriad’s claims to isolated DNA encoding BRCA1 polypeptides and methods for screening potential cancer therapeutics. Individuals who inherit the BRCA1 gene have an increased chance of developing certain cancers, most notably breast cancer.