Genetic technologies, health care policy and the patent bargain

Clin Genet. 2003 Jan;63(1):15-8. doi: 10.1034/j.1399-0004.2003.630103.x.


The idea of granting patents on human genetic material continues to cause controversy. The debate is largely focussed on the moral acceptability of human gene patents, the impact of gene patents on the research environment and the value of patents to stimulate innovation and the commercialization and dissemination of genetic discoveries. As highlighted by a recent controversy in Canada, patents can also have a profound effect on health policy and access to genetic services. Creative and bold patent reform initiatives are necessary to ensure that society will, to the highest degree possible, reap the health care benefits of the genetic revolution.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Canada
  • Genome, Human*
  • Health Policy*
  • Humans
  • Patents as Topic / ethics*
  • Patents as Topic / legislation & jurisprudence