Should Genes Be Patented? Essay

1603 words - 7 pages

Should Genes be Patented?
Patenting genetic discoveries have proven to be controversial throughout the years. There are now patents that are associated with many of the genes within the human genome. Patents are issued to encourage innovation and protect those investing in genetic research the opportunity to maximize profit. During this period, another party can use the discovery to develop a product only with a licensing agreement; however, basic researchers can use it freely. Some argue that this period of exclusivity fosters commercial development of the discovery by discouraging competition. Yet the patenting of genes is not without controversy. Some reject the entire concept of ...view middle of the document...

The main purpose of patenting genes is to provide an incentive for full disclosure so that others can learn about the gene, use it after patent expiration, and/or try to discover new genes using the patented gene as a starting point for discovery. According to William A. Haseltine, “the patent system is thus structured and administered to assure the rapid and open dissemination of new knowledge, encourage innovation, and promote commerce.” Discovering and developing new gene-based medicine requires years of commitment and immense capital resources. According to University of Melbourne professor Andrew Christie, “if we ban the patenting of genes, we will remove the incentive for people to invest.” Without the possibility of regaining investment that is offered by patents, no biotechnology company would be able to raise the financing necessary to develop vital products. With this being addressed, many believe allowing genes to be the subject of patents will not stifle research or prevent beneficial therapies from reaching the general public. Allowing genes to be protected under patent law is believed to encourage private investment in bringing therapies to market, and with the acceleration of this science, inventive steps should increase and lead to a precisely defined process to patent genes. Debate will continue over the patent status of gene sequences, but the arguments will most likely be about utility and claims rather that inventiveness.
The main issue with gene patents is that on average, a patent costs about $10 million per patent, takes about five years to process, and ultimately inhibits future developments in medicine (“Intellectual Property and Genetics”). As the risks to infringe existing patents grow, pharmaceutical industries are forced to specialize in particular fields, therefore increasing costs for litigation concerning the patents and impeding research activities. Although some would argue that not patenting genes would prevent new drugs from being created, there are patents that could be placed on formulating the proteins or synthesizing variations once they are discovered instead of the gene itself (“Patenting Life”). By doing this the gene would not need to be patented, and in turn the cost of the drugs could be kept at a lower rate because there would be less licensing fees that would need to be paid for. However, if this is not considered, a price increase would result. This price increase can prevent the drugs from spreading to the public by creating high rates of return since most people will be unable to afford the increase in price, regardless of how vital the drug is to them or a family member. If this occurs, a serious road block to innovations in drug discovery research would result; this would ultimately lead to a higher mortality rate, higher morbidity from diseases, and slow down or cripple innovations in personalized medicine. Furthermore, patent holders have the right to ask that drugs be withdrawn if they...

Other assignments on Should Genes Be Patented?

Genetically Engineered Foods Essay

1099 words - 5 pages to dealing with the world hunger crisis. Some believe that tampering with the natural order of environmental evolution can be potentially dangerous. Some scientists fear that extracting genes from different apparently useful organisms and inserting them into a totally unrelated species could be dangerous. This is where their concern for mutated plants comes into play. What exactly could happen where this particular crop is eaten? The effects

Drug Addiction Essay

1137 words - 5 pages these genetic factors exist before the person's first experience with a drug or whether the genes are 'turned on' like a light switch upon first usage.(3) Can these predispositions be observed in other behaviors before the addiction is active? Addiction specialists refer to "addictive behavior" as a category much broader than the limited definition of actual usage, and many of these addictive behaviors can identified in an addict before they ever

Data Center

932 words - 4 pages cooling IT equipment.. A PUE of 2.0 means that for every watt of IT power, an additional watt is consumed to cool and distributes power to the IT equipment. A PUE of 1.0 is considered ideal. A closer PUE of 1.0 means that almost all the energy is used to compute. For use PUE to be effective, should be measured often. If you occasionally makes the information will not be realistic. Ideally, measured as quickly and frequently as every second

Dba 7035 Plavix Case Study

932 words - 4 pages , and sell the patented innovation for a certain time frame. As the inventor, having the exclusive rights encourages longevity of time and investment into new discoveries. “Patents are the driving force in the pharmaceutical industry, providing strong incentives for research, development, and testing of new chemical entities,” (Baron, 2010, p. 381). Some competitors feel like this is unfair to consumers and fight to be able to put their product on

History Of Community Health

1416 words - 6 pages for the Rh-ve and O groups from one parent are masked (i.e., they are recessive) by the presence of Rh+ve and A or B genes from the other parent. That is, O and Rh negative genes only produce an effect when there is a "double dose" of such genes, i.e., one from each parent (homozygous condition). Thus, people who are apparently A or B Rh+ve may also carry genes for the O and Rh-ve blood groups which can be inherited by their children.  Principle

Biological And Humanistic Approaches

1031 words - 5 pages raised by a quiet and withdrawn mother. The one child who inherits the mother’s introverted genes may grow to be like the mother. Whereas the outgoing child, may grow to be more family oriented focused on communicating with all family as a means of being more sociable. Raising those two children in a household with a more outgoing mother, could have caused a reverse outcome. Although this idea does seem to make sense Abraham Maslow believes in a

Pg Mm

717 words - 3 pages ANSWER THREE OF THE QUESTIONS ALL QUESTIONS SHOULD BE ANSWERED IN A SEPARATE BOOKLET Answer all parts of the chosen questions. All questions are for 22 marks. 1. (a) Discuss the design of a pharmacogenomic study, including pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic aspects, to evaluate the variability in response to warfarin in populations with different ancestries. [ 11 marks ] (b) Describe 2 different enzymes affecting

Asset Goodwill

904 words - 4 pages profit is today, within a year, and a year and longer. Knowing the finances of the business on a daily basis is important but also planning ahead is a must in order to run a successful business. When calculating the projected finances for a business you should break it down into two sections, which are current assets and current liabilities. Current assets are all items that the business owns that can be sold or turned into cash within a year’s

Pbl Breast Cancer

3112 words - 13 pages harmful BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutations may be at increased risk of additional types of cancer. * Genetic tests can check for BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations in people with a family history of cancer that suggests the possible presence of a harmful mutation in one of these genes. * If a harmful BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation is found, several options are available to help a person manage their cancer risk. 1. What are BRCA1 and BRCA2? BRCA1 and BRCA2

The Advantages And Disadvantages Of China’S Apparel Manufacturing Industry

905 words - 4 pages their corporations should take responsibility for sourcing to sweatshops. Now, corporations respect such standards, which has changed the pressure cast on Chinese apparel manufacturers. Instead of fast, cheap labor, factories are still low cost but account for laborers and the environment. I am proud that Americans are taking responsibility to support workers’ autonomy more than cheap labor. Learning about China’s apparel manufacturing industry effect on workers taught me to be more aware of the disadvantages of dominance and how I can be an advantage by supporting human rights in all areas, like my purchases!


1067 words - 5 pages genes, your environment and even the successes and failures in your life. What is personality? As there is not one specific definition, the word originates from the latin word persona and while many personality theorists according to Feist and Feist, 2009, personality can be known as a pattern of relatively permanent traits and unique characteristics that give both consistency and individuality to a person’s behavior. Many people view

Similar Documents

None Essay

1092 words - 5 pages in rats claimed that there were differences in the intestines of rats fed GM potatoes and those fed unmodified potatoes. (Lancet, 1999) There are economic concerns on bringing a GM food to market because many technologies and GM plants have been patented. Introduction of “suicide gene” into GM plants where the plants would be viable for only one growing season would combat patent infringement. However, this would negatively affect farmers in

Meck Case Study

963 words - 4 pages . Merck should make a good bid for the Davanrik drug, because based on Merck’s business model, it makes most profit from their patented drugs. Davanrik as a new product in the market, may help Merck stay in competition as well as maintain its profit margins. There is a high risk involved but pharmaceutical companies only thrive because they can bear the risk. Merck has the financial capability to take the risk and this makes it an interesting offer, Merck should be aggressive and bid wisely. References Ruback, R. S. (2003, March 25). Retrieved from Harvard Business School:

Zzzz Essay

972 words - 4 pages development of new long-lived batteries. The goal is to control a new technology taking advantage over the competitors. The target company has already started the the research phase (e1M have been already invested) which will last for two more years. For supporting the remaining research period the company needs to invest now e1.5M more. After the R&D period the product can be patented and the company can start producing and commercializing it, if

Alcoholism Essay

1052 words - 5 pages , anxiety disorders, domestic violence, depression, homicide and suicides. People with AUD should seek professional help as soon as possible. Clinically, AUD can be treated by using different psychological approach. The first step is for psychologist to assess individual to find co-occurring conditions. As we mentioned earlier, people who drinks a lot, they are doing so trying to balance the problems they are facing and real life. So assessment is