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Europe’s top court bans stem cell patents

As reported on Findlaw: “Europe’s top court says patents cannot be filed on stem-cell research using cells from human embryos, a move many scientists say will harm future advances in medicine. In a decision issued on Tuesday, the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg wrote that a process that involves taking a stem cell from a human embryo, resulting in its destruction, cannot be patented.”

Will the state’s courts save us from the state’s laws. Will they. No.

{ 2 comments… add one }
  • Mr Civil Libertarian October 18, 2011, 2:59 pm

    And from the BBC:

    Commenting on the decision, Prof Austin Smith of the Wellcome Trust Centre for Stem Cell Research, University of Cambridge, said: “This unfortunate decision by the court leaves scientists in a ridiculous position.

    “We are funded to do research for the public good, yet prevented from taking our discoveries to the marketplace where they could be developed into new medicines.

    “One consequence is that the benefits of our research will be reaped in America and Asia.”
    This translates in my mind to something like “We were supposed to research to help people, and now the research will help a lot more people than it otherwise would. How horrible!”

    “European researchers may conduct basic research, which is then implemented elsewhere in medical procedures, which will eventually be reimported to Europe. How do I explain this to my students?”

    Congratulatory champagne reception celebrating taking a step to curing various conditions such as Parkinson’s and diabetes?

  • David Koepsell October 18, 2011, 11:10 pm

    Good ruling, wrong reasons, but good result. Unlike the Bush ban, there is no absence of funding for the research, they just can’t get a monopoly from the government so, gasp, they’ll be forced to compete on the free market with any useful inventions they create. They can also easily implement their discoveries, patent-free, in Europe. There’s no prohibition against that. How can he explain to his students his complete failure to understand the real implications of this ruling? The benefits of the research will be reaped wherever they are implemented, if useful, and if valued by the market.

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