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Potential Profit vs. Public Interest?

In a recent New England Journal of Medicine perspective piece, Harvard Medical School's Aaron Kesselheim and Rahul Rajkumar discuss ownership of federally funded research in the context of the Bayh-Dole Act, particularly related to what they call the "long-simmering dispute between Stanford University and Roche Molecular Systems regarding ownership of a widely used and profitable diagnostic assay for human immunodeficiency virus." Kesselheim and Rajkumar suggest that the US Supreme Court's decision — that Stanford did not have a claim to the patent on the PCR-based test it said Roche infringed — "may have been influenced by the tenuous relationship between the federal funding and the product at issue." The court's ruling necessitates a legislative amendment to Bayh-Dole, they add, suggesting that "universities should reexamine and perhaps revamp their licensing practices to ensure that they are indeed acting as stewards of the public good, rather than simply seeking to maximize their own licensing revenues."

The Scan

Fertility Fraud Found

Consumer genetic testing has uncovered cases of fertility fraud that are leading to lawsuits, according to USA Today.

Ties Between Vigorous Exercise, ALS in Genetically At-Risk People

Regular strenuous exercise could contribute to motor neuron disease development among those already at genetic risk, Sky News reports.

Test Warning

The Guardian writes that the US regulators have warned against using a rapid COVID-19 test that is a key part of mass testing in the UK.

Science Papers Examine Feedback Mechanism Affecting Xist, Continuous Health Monitoring for Precision Medicine

In Science this week: analysis of cis confinement of the X-inactive specific transcript, and more.