DIAMOND V. CHAKRABARTY
AND THE MONETIZATION OF GENOMICS
Mark Achbar and Jennifer Abbott, USA
2004, 5 min 06 sec
Extract from the 2003 Canadian documentary “The Corporation” Overview of contemporary patent dispute and usage related to emergent CRISPR gene editing process.
Professor Chakrabarty wanted to get a microbe that eats oil spills patented. He claimed he had modified this microbe in the laboratory and therefore it was an invention. The patent was denied, living things can’t be patented. Then he appealed to the US Customs Court of Appeal and overruled the patent office. This case was a major turning point in history.
It led to a one sentence decrete of the patent office: you can patent everything in the world that’s alive except a full birth human being.