Court of justice CE 18 10 2011 n 34

EC Court Justice Grand Chamber, 18 October 2011, n. 34


Brüstle / Greenpeace eV


Sources: Diritto e Giustizia, 2011 October 19, 2011 Guide to Law, 44, 15 (sm) (note: CASTELLANETA; SALERNO), Giust. civ. 2011, 12, I, 2757




Summary: Article. 6 n. 2, letter. c) of the Directive of the European Parliament and Council of 6 July 1998, 98/44/EC on the legal protection of biotechnological inventions, must be interpreted in the sense that: is a "human embryo" any human egg from fertilization, any egg human unfertilized egg is implanted in which the nucleus of a mature human cell and any unfertilized human egg, which through parthenogenesis has been induced to divide and grow - the national court to determine, given the developments of science, if a stem cell derived from a human embryo at the blastocyst stage constitutes a "human embryo" within the meaning of art. 6 n. 2, letter. c) of Directive 98/44. The exclusion from patentability on the use of human embryos for industrial or commercial purposes stated in Article. 6 n. 2, letter. c) of Directive 98/44 also relates to the use for purposes of scientific research, while only the use for therapeutic or diagnostic purposes which applies to the human embryo and are useful for the latter may be the subject of a patent. Article. 6 n. 2, letter. c) of Directive 98/44 exclude the patentability of an invention where the technical teaching of the subject patent application requires the prior destruction of human embryos or their use as starting material, regardless of the stage where they are held and even if the description of the technical subject of a claim does not mention the use of human embryos (the Court makes the following ruling in proceedings concerning the application for annulment of a German patent relating to a proceeding with respect to neural progenitor cells isolated and purified, obtained from human embryonic stem cells and developed to treat degenerative diseases).


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