Greenpeace denounced patent of 'living beings'

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Related tags: Patent

The Ecologist group Greenpeace condemned the granting of a European
patent for a genetic tweak that can make salmon grow eight times
larger than normal.

On September 10, the Ecologist group Greenpeace condemned the granting of a European patent for a genetic tweak that can make salmon grow eight times larger than normal, Reuters reports. Greenpeace France said the Munich-based European Patent Office (EPO) granted the Canadian company Seabright Corporation a patent for a genetically modified (GM) Atlantic salmon and all other fish species carrying an additional gene for faster growth. It said EPO granted the patent using EU legislation on "Biotechnological Inventions"​ although patents on living beings are not allowed under the European Patent Convention. EPO was not immediately available for comment. "This legislation is open to all kinds of abuses. Patents on living beings are an encouragement to putting the environment at risk and carrying out questionable experiments as shown in the case of the transgenic fish,"​ Greenpeace France GM expert Eric Gall said in a statement. A/F Protein, a Seabright branch, said on its Web site that when its transgene antifreeze protein was introduced into Atlantic salmon, it "resulted in the production of salmon that grow at a rate dramatically faster than standard salmon."

Related topics: Regulation & Policy

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