taq isolation

Duncan Clark Duncan at genesys.demon.co.uk
Sat May 13 06:32:30 EST 1995


In article: <1995May13.053308.33577 at rs6000.cmp.ilstu.edu>  ajotsuka at rs6000.cmp.ilstu.edu (Anthony Otsuka) writes:
 
> I am not a patent lawyer, but from what I understand about patent law,
> it is not possible to patent a natural substance, for example Taq
> DNA polymerase.  

In the field of molecular biology this isn't the case. It is possible to
patent a restriction enzyme as NEB and Stratagene have done many times. 
The Taq patent issue is not over whether it can be patented more over what
can be patented. Basically Roche claim that the previously purified and 
published DNA polymerase from Thermus aquaticus is not the same enzyme as 
they themselves have purified. Promega and virtually everyone else say that
if one follows the published purification procedure one purifies the same 
enzyme as Roche, hence the patent is invalid and it is prior art. If the 
enzyme truly is different then the Roche patent is valid. 

Regards

Duncan



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