Gene patenting has been facing backlash for decades now and with such hostility towards patents, the professional interests of academics and inventors are under threat of losing their rights over the work they have done. With constant biological changes, new diseases are appearing and the researchers are digging deeper to find newer cures. However, as noble as it sounds, not all progress is free and therefore rewarding the researchers in not unfair.
Should gene patent be banned outright?
Gene patents are important to the biotech industry. Banning them can close down a big part of the market and limit the progress in the scientific development. Inventions need huge investments and time. In 2014, Tufts University analyzed the expenses of brining a new drug to market and discovered that the expenses are over $800 million and developing prescriptions which will gain market approval is estimated to be an even greater number.
Are the anti gene-patent myths true?
Anti gene-patent activists argue that it is easy to develop a molecular finding once a gene's scientific literature is identified. However, the financial documents reveal something different. The Genomic Health prospectus in 2005 showed that it took them $20 million to fund research and development programs for a variety of cancers. Third Wave's 10-K account for 2005 showed that they spent $8.4 million on research. The biotech industry, the National Institute of Health, in the US spent $49 billion alone on biomedical research in 2004, spending 36% on the national biomedical research.
The cost of development of biophamaceuticals is above $1.2 billion. According to studies, the pharmaceutical industry is the prime area benefitting from the encouraging effect of patents than any other areas of science. Patents are important, especially for new companies, which needs substantial investment from outside. The innovation, due to patents, brought in fresh companies into the biotech industry in the last two decades. These are certainly huge investments and it would never have taken place knowing that there will be competition for the same product. #patent #human gene