Patenting Nanomedicine in Europe: Applying the "medical methods exception" to emerging technologies

Research output: Book/ReportPh.D. thesisResearch

Ana Nordberg

This work addresses the question of determining whether reinterpretation, reformulation or replacement of article 53 (c) of the European Patent Convention is viable and advisable. It does so by reference to novel or resurfacing interpretative concerns connected with emerging technologies exemplified by nanomedicine, while considering known interpretative issues and traditional objections to this provision. The debate concerning the patentability of ‘medical methods’ is multi-layered and complex. The ‘medical methods exception’ is a public policy mechanism, intended to introduce flexibility in the patent system in order to allow for the protection of core ethical values of society. Nanotechnology inventions blur the lines between patentable subject matter and what may fall under the exception from patentability. It is a good example of how in recent years, emerging technologies have been challenging the patent system. This work examines the basic foundations of the norm, the justifications for patent rights and how exceptions to such rights fit within the system; the interpretative construction of the norm and its application in the praxis of the EPO; and how the legislator in the USA has chosen a different approach to integrate in patent law similar policy considerations. Observing how this issue was debated and solved differently is in itself important, but it also allows questioning whether in future patent reforms serious consideration should not be given to alternative solutions.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationKøbenhavn
PublisherDet Juridiske Fakultet
Number of pages332
Publication statusPublished - 2014

    Research areas

  • The Faculty of Law - Nanotechnology patents, Emerging technologies, European Patent Convention, Medical methods patents

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