Bioinformatics Innovations and Patent Eligibility

Onderzoeksoutput: Articlepeer review


Bioinformatics is a rapidly developing area in the field of technology, with the potential for new inventions beyond our imagination. Today, genetic information is freely available online from the databases developed and maintained by various research institutions and bio-ventures. The availability of vast amount of information about the human genome has increased the potential of bioinformatics inventions. The identification of the function of a gene, through DNA analysis using sophisticated laboratory techniques and complex computer algorithms, will allow for the development of useful products such as pharmaceuticals and therapeutic drugs, among other advancements. There is no specific bioinformatics law as such, and no court has adjudicated any disputes related to bioinformatics. Except for a few advanced countries, many countries have no bioinformatics technology. Due to its special nature (combination of biology and information technology), bioinformatics is worthy of special consideration in terms of intellectual property.

Bioinformatics inventions have brought up many uncertainties over the issue of patent eligibility. Some bioinformatics inventions can utilize a composition of matter or article of manufacture claims, whereas most bioinformatics inventions are software processes. Bioinformatics software patents are among the most difficult protections to obtain. This paper surveys and critically examines bioinformatics-related patent laws and practices in the US, Canada, the EU, Australia, and Japan and analyzes whether bioinformatics innovations are protected by patent laws. This paper addresses the issues relating to the patent eligibility of bioinformatics innovations.
Originele taal-2English
Pagina's (van-tot)140-156
Aantal pagina's17
TijdschriftJournal of World Intellectual Property
Nummer van het tijdschrift3-4
StatusPublished - 1 jul 2018


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