Too few countries holding too many marine genes

New research published in Science raises concerns about the number of gene patents held by a few countries and proposes a new international system to ensure the fair use of marine genetic resources.

The paper outlines the problem that while there is a Convention on Biological Diversity applying to Marine Genetic Resources, 65 per cent of the world’s ocean is in “Areas Beyond National Jurisdiction” where no consensus could be reached.

The paper reveals that ten countries own 90 per cent of the patents deposited with marine genes, with 70% belonging to the top three, United States, Germany and Japan.

Read more at University of Western Australia