Robinson Bradshaw

Author: John Conley

Williams v. Athena Motion to Dismiss Hearing—SC Supreme Court May Be Asked to Decide Whether a Diagnostic Laboratory Qualifies as a Healthcare Provider

Foreword by John Conley  Back on May 31, 2016, Contributing Editor Jennifer Wagner wrote a lengthy report on the newly filed case of Williams v. Quest Diagnostics, et al. As Jen recounted, plaintiff Amy Williams sued Athena Diagnostics and its corporate parent, Quest Diagnostics, alleging that Athena negligently misclassified a genetic variant it identified in testing […]

FTC Muscles in on Health Privacy

In its July 29, 2016 decision in LabMD, Inc., the Federal Trade Commission clearly signaled its intent to get more involved in the regulation of health privacy. Specifically, the case indicates that the agency intends to go well beyond its traditional role of protecting consumers against deception and to begin scrutinizing the nuts and bolts […]

New Federal Trade Secret Act and Its Impact on Life Sciences

On May 11, 2016, a new federal trade secrets law called the Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA) took effect. Its primary impact is to allow the victims of trade secret misappropriation to sue in federal court. It also provides some new civil remedies that exceed what is usually available under state law. The DTSA will […]

EU Adopts New Privacy Shield for Data Transfers to U.S.

Back in April, we reported on some new developments in European Union law that have implications for the life sciences industry. One of these developments was in the privacy area—the final approval of the EU’s new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). The GDPR will have enormous significance for medical research and practice, since it will […]

NIH Refuses to March In—Again—And National Academies Challenge Human Subjects Regulation

The last few days have seen two significant news items from Washington. First, the National Institutes of Health have refused—yet again—to exercise their “march-in” rights to grant third-party licenses to a patented drug developed with federal funding. The drug in question is enzalutamide, a prostate cancer treatment marketed under the brand name Xtandi by Japanese […]

Cleveland Clinic Pathologist Urges Contract Solution for Return of Genomic Data

The Cleveland Clinic’s Roger Klein responds to my previous GLR post: The Office of Civil Rights’ interpretation of the requirements of 45 CFR § 164 could pose problems for clinical laboratories and the professionals who practice within them. Although the issue of providing benign variants for a single gene, at least prospectively, would be straightforward, […]

UNC Geneticist Comments on Testing Laboratories’ Duty to Return Genomic Data to Patients

UNC’s Karen Weck responds to my previous GLR post: I agree in principle that patients have the right to access their genomic data; however, in practice it is much more complicated (as things often are). Giving a patient his/her raw sequencing data would be meaningless – it is the interpretation of the clinical significance of […]

ACLU v. Myriad Genetics, Round 2: The Problem of Governance-by-Guidance

Just about everyone interested enough in genomics and the law to read this post will know that the American Civil Liberties Union waged a long and ultimately successful legal campaign to invalidate Myriad Genetics’ patent claims to isolated BRCA genes, mutations of which are linked to breast and ovarian cancer. Now the ACLU has launched […]

Recent Developments in European Law with Implications for the U.S. Life Sciences Industry

The last several months have seen several developments in European privacy and intellectual property that have significant implications for life sciences interests—both commercial and academic—in this country. Here is a brief review: 1. Final Approval of Pending EU General Data Protection Regulation On April 14, 2016, the Parliament of the European Union gave final approval […]

How Privacy Law Affects Medical and Scientific Research

Over the last five or so years my law practice has focused increasingly on privacy law, both domestic and international. In hindsight, this was a predictable outcome: as an intellectual property lawyer, many of my clients do business on the Internet or are engaged in scientific research and development, with many of the latter in […]