Even more info regarding Myraid and GENE back in 2008:
In 2003 a company called Myriad Genetics took out four patents in America. So there is no confusion about what those patents are—and there is at present lobbying around this building that I have got this wrong, but I have not got it wrong—there are three Australian BRCA1 patents, 686004, 691331 and 691958, and one BRCA2 patent, 773601, that have been granted by IP Australia. The owners of these patents vary, but Myriad Genetics USA is a part owner of all patents. All four patents expire. The BRCA1 patents expire in 2015, BRCA2 in 2016. Two BRCA1 and BRCA2 patents define the primary invention to be an isolated nucleic acid—that is, DNA that has been removed from the human body. The BRCA1 patent 691331 defines the primary invention to be any method of detecting in a human being the DNA or a biological derivative of the human gene that codes for the mutant protein BRCA1.
In October 2002, Genetic Technologies Ltd, an Australian company, became the exclusive licensee of all four patents. The Patents Act 1990 provides in section 18(1) that IP Australia is permitted to grant a 20-year patent monopoly for an invention that is novel, involves an inventive step or is industrially applicable. No Australian court has ruled on whether an isolated biological material that is identical or substantially identical to a naturally-occurring substance or material such as a human gene is a proper subject of letters patent in Australia. I am pleased that the Senate inquiry, which has broad-ranging terms of reference, will be able to investigate this matter. Genetic Technologies’s job—I have spoken to their gentleman this morning—is to get a quid for their shareholders and, the more patents they can accumulate, the more their shares are going to be worth.
I will give you the tone of what is done around Australia to a whole body of research in a whole lot of public laboratories with great people in them. This is a typical application of the financial instrument from Gene Technologies:
As part of its licensing arrangements, GTG has formed strategic alliances with Myriad Genetics for GTG to offer cancer susceptibility testing in Australia, New Zealand and parts of South East Asia.