Defusing Disclosure in Patent Applications: a positive strategy to strengthen legal certainty in the Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilisation to the Convention on Biological Diversity and support WIPO’s Intergovernmental Committee on Intellectual Property and Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Folklore
Paul D. Oldham (ESRC Centre for Economic and Social Aspects of Genomics) and Geoff Burton (UNU-IAS), October 2010

This report provides analysis and factual data on ways forward for the successful introduction of a practical system for monitoring the utilization of genetic resources and traditional knowledge in patent applications. It suggests a resolution to a key issue blocking the creation of such a system. This resolution is based on 4 elements: acknowledging and analyzing the current impasse between the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) on the disclosure of certain biodiversity information in patent applications (Section 1); analyzing a useful precedent for a functional disclosure requirement using the Bayh-Dole provisions of the US Patent Act (Section 2); interrogating the patent system to see to what extent disclosure of countries of origin already takes place (Section 3); and interrogating the patent system to explore disclosure issues with respect to indigenous and local communities and traditional knowledge (Section 4). Read the paper …

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