About the Authors

  • The Authors and Contributors of "Patent Docs" are patent attorneys and agents, many of whom hold doctorates in a diverse array of disciplines.
2018 Juristant Badge - MBHB_165
Juristat #4 Overall Rank

E-mail Newsletter

  • Enter your e-mail address below to receive the "Patent Docs" e-mail newsletter.

Contact the Docs


  • "Patent Docs" does not contain any legal advice whatsoever. This weblog is for informational purposes only, and its publication does not create an attorney-client relationship. In addition, nothing on "Patent Docs" constitutes a solicitation for business. This weblog is intended primarily for other attorneys. Moreover, "Patent Docs" is the personal weblog of the Authors; it is not edited by the Authors' employers or clients and, as such, no part of this weblog may be so attributed. All posts on "Patent Docs" should be double-checked for their accuracy and current applicability.
Juristat #8 Overall Rank


« Reaction to Supreme Court's Decision in AMP v. Myriad | Main | After Myriad: A Herd of Elephants in the Room »

July 02, 2013


The Free the Data web site acknowledges that "It is impossible to achieve "perfect" security because new vulnerabilities and threats appear every day." This is important information patients to have before they turn their private genetic data over to strangers. I'm not convinced people know what they are "signing up for" when they participate in this unregulated public database.

ClinVar is a public database run by the National Institutes of Health. A single variant or mutation is deposited, without any identifiers or path back to the donor.

A single variant, or mutation, is not a security threat. It is also not a privacy threat because there is no way to associate the single variant, without the other variant (even then it is hard to do unless they are a unique combination, and then one still needs a second data source with identifiers available) with an individual.

That said, we, of course respect individual decisions, which is why our system gives one the tools to completely block all sharing of one's information.

Free the Data is an opportunity to create a resource for all to use, with no risk to individuals. The proprietary database has 13,000+ variants in it - many unknown to the clinicians who are trying to advise women as to whether they have an extremely high likelihood of breast and ovarian cancer or not. As more labs offer BRCA1/2 testing, it is important to have these variants available.

The comments to this entry are closed.

May 2024

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
      1 2 3 4
5 6 7 8 9 10 11
12 13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24 25
26 27 28 29 30 31