When Biotechnology Meets the Law

  • Contact: Debbie Strickland
    (202) 962-9233
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Washington, D.C. (May 20, 2002)—The Bio Judiciary Project will launch an online primer on biotechnology and the law during its inaugural event, “An Ongoing Conversation,” Tuesday, May 21, from 9 to 11 a.m. at the National Press Club. A continental breakfast will be served from 8 to 9 a.m.

Speakers include Carl B. Feldbaum, president of the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) and ex-officio chairman of The Bio Judiciary Project; Roy Whitfield, chairman of Incyte Genomics; and the Honorable Q. Todd Dickinson, Esq., former commissioner of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and under-secretary of Commerce for intellectual property. The Honorable Judge Randall R. Rader, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, will deliver the keynote address.

“Biotechnology patent applications are soaring, and in the coming years judges likely will be called upon to settle disputes surrounding cutting-edge technologies such as stem cells, cloning, xenotransplantation and transgenic animals,” said Feldbaum. “Patents on genes and other biological molecules are also certain to face challenges because so many applications have been filed and because such intellectual property is not well understood.”

The Press Club event and The Bio Judiciary Project itself grew out of Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer’s call for “an ongoing conversation” among the industry, scientists, legal scholars and judges about life-sciences research and its legal dimension.

The event Tuesday morning is free, but because seating is limited to 150, on-line advance registration at www.biojudiciary.org is strongly recommended. The National Press Club is located at 529 14th Street, NW, 13th floor, Washington, DC 20045. “An Ongoing Conversation” will be webcast and archived at www.biojudiciary.org, which will also house A Jurist’s Guide to Biotechnology, the online primer. A Jurist’s Guide features discussions of laws pertaining to biotechnology and cases that have tested and refined those laws. Users can link to scientific glossary entries and to the text of relevant laws and decisions.

BIO represents more than 1,000 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations in all 50 U.S. states and 33 other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development of health-care, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products.

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About BIO
BIO is the world's largest trade association representing biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations across the United States and in more than 30 other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development of innovative healthcare, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products. BIO also produces the BIO International Convention, the world’s largest gathering of the biotechnology industry, along with industry-leading investor and partnering meetings held around the world. BIOtechNOW is BIO's blog chronicling “innovations transforming our world” and the BIO Newsletter is the organization’s bi-weekly email newsletter. Subscribe to the BIO Newsletter.