Genetics company presents its case to patent genes to Supreme Court

WASHINGTON, D.C. (WIAT) — The Supreme Court is hearing both sides of a case that could have major implications for medical research.

The question at hand: Can human genes being be patented?

Myriad Genetics says that its patent on the human genes, or BRCA genes, is valid.

The BRCA genes show whether or not a person has a greater chance of breast or ovarian cancer.

The opponents to the arguments say that genes are a part of nature, so no one has the right to patent a part of the human body.

Myriad, and a number of other biotech companies, argue that what they are patenting is not a part of nature.

Copyright 2013 WIAT-TV CBS 42

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