Patenting Live (19th Century - 2013)

Main

Pasteur's anomalous yeast patent

1873

Adrenaline purified and compound

1911

Insulin (isolated and purified)

1920

University of Toronto

B12

December 1947

Streptomycin

1948

Patent for crystalline salts - patentable despite being products of nature

UPOV

1961 - 2013

TRIPS Agreement

1994 - 2013

European Approach

Germany case on microorganisms

1975

1st Patent for Plant

1988

Greenpeace v Plant Genetic Systems

1995

EPO Technical Board of Appeal.
Plant cells as such cannot be considered to fall under the definition of plant or of plant variety - transgenic plants per se were unpatentable

Directive on Biotech

1998

EPO Enlarged BoA - Plants

1999

"A claim wherein specific plant varieties are not individually claimed is not excluded from patentability under article 53 (b), even though it may embrace plant varieties"

American Approach

"Product of Nature" Doctrine

1880 - 2013

Diamond v Chakrabarty

1980

Man-made oil-eating bacterium
Relevant was Product of nature v human-made
not Living vs inanimate
Microorganisms more akin to chemical compounds

Plants patentatibility

1985

Didn't settle the question - 2001 Supreme Court decision confirmed the legality

Multicellular organisms

1987

Polyploid oysters - patent rejected, but multicellular organisms were patentable

Oncomouse

1988

Plants - Supreme Court

December 2001

Pioneer Hi-bred and J.E.M Ag Supply

Biotechnology

Biotech development

1970 - 2013

DNA sequence claims

1980 - 2013

Started in the early 80s. Increased enormously by the end of the 20th Century. 5000% from 1990