Canada Supreme Court To Hear Monsanto Gene Patent Suit Tuesday

Law360, New York (January 19, 2004, 12:00 AM EST) -- Canada’s Supreme Court will hear arguments Tuesday in a high-profile case that pits a farmer against U.S. agricultural giant Monsanto over the right to patent life forms.

At the center of the litigation is a gene Monsanto invented, patented and introduced into canola in 1996. It makes canola plants resistant to a common weed-control herbicide the company markets, known as Roundup.

The resulting strain of canola — Roundup Ready — can survive applications of Roundup, and its progeny are equally resistant. Approximately 20,000 farmers now plant...
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