NEWS OF THE WEIRD

Company's Patent Makes Cancer Test 
Too Expensive

Posted

Until recently, apparently, gene mutations were considered merely freaks of nature, but that was before Myriad Genetics obtained binding U.S. patents for mutations it discovered — now known as BRCA-1 and BRCA-2. Those mutations were in the news in May when actor Angelina Jolie announced that she had chosen to have a double mastectomy based on the presence of the cancer-causing mutations, which she had learned of through a Myriad Genetics test costing about $4,000. There is no price competition for the test, due to the patent, and Jolie, along with oncologists and OB-GYN doctors, fret that the test is too expensive for tens of millions of women around the world whose lives could be saved by knowing their status.

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