Hiatus in French laws on biotech patenting:
This article was originally published in Clinica
The French Senate failed to adopt the bioethics bill by February 22, the date parliament was dissolved. It will not be debated until after the elections in June at the earliest, and possibly not until the autumn. The bill is being closely watched by the diagnostics industry; it contains a clause banning the patentability of living beings (see Clinica No 995, p 4). It will have implications for the granting of patents such as Myriad's patent for testing for mutations to the BRCA 1 gene in breast cancer (see this issue p 3 and p18). The main bill on biotechnology patenting, which has been undergoing change because of the controversy surrounding the patentability of living beings, is also frozen until after the elections.