The Patent Act governs the law of patents in the United States. Currently, the Patent and Trademark Office functions to issue patents, for which genetically engineered animal species may legally be patented in the United States.
PL 112-29, September 16, 2011, 125 Stat 284
112th Congress - First Session
Convening January 04, 2011
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PL 112–29 [HR 1249]
September 16, 2011
LEAHY–SMITH AMERICA INVENTS ACT
(c) CONDITIONS FOR PATENTABILITY; NONOBVIOUS SUBJECT MATTER.--Section 103 of title 35, United States Code, is amended to read as follows:
“§ 103. Conditions for patentability; non-obvious subject matter
(a) A patent may not be obtained though the invention is not identically disclosed or described as set forth in section 102 of this title, if the differences between the subject matter sought to be patented and the prior art are such that the subject matter as a whole would have been obvious at the time the invention was made to a person having ordinary skill in the art to which said subject matter pertains. Patentability shall not be negatived by the manner in which the invention was made.
(b)(1) Notwithstanding subsection (a), and upon timely election by the applicant for patent to proceed under this subsection, a biotechnological process using or resulting in a composition of matter that is novel under section 102 and nonobvious under subsection (a) of this section shall be considered nonobvious if--
(c)(1) Subject matter developed by another person, which qualifies as prior art only under one or more of subsections (e), (f), and (g) of section 102 of this title, shall not preclude patentability under this section where the subject matter and the claimed invention were, at the time the claimed invention was made, owned by the same person or subject to an obligation of assignment to the same person.
(2) For purposes of this subsection, subject matter developed by another person and a claimed invention shall be deemed to have been owned by the same person or subject to an obligation of assignment to the same person if--
(3) For purposes of paragraph (2), the term “joint research agreement” means a written contract, grant, or cooperative agreement entered into by two or more persons or entities for the performance of experimental, developmental, or research work in the field of the claimed invention.
(July 19, 1952, c. 950, 66 Stat. 798; Nov. 8, 1984, Pub.L. 98-622, Title I, § 103, 98 Stat. 3384; Nov. 1, 1995, Pub.L. 104-41, § 1, 109 Stat. 351; Nov. 29, 1999, Pub.L. 106-113, Div. B, § 1000(a)(9) [Title IV, § 4807(a)], 113 Stat. 1536, 1501A-591; Dec. 10, 2004, Pub.L. 108-453, § 2, 118 Stat. 3596; Pub.L. 112-29, § 3(c), 20(j)(1), Sept. 16, 2011, 125 Stat. 287, 335.)