The biotechnology patents are related to products consisting or containing biological material, or that is relative to a process by which the biological material is produced, processed or used. The biotechnology patents involve the pharmaceutical, agrochemical, energy and environmental sectors.

As a general rule, biotechnological inventions are patentable if the biological material has been isolated from its natural environment or has been produced by means of a technical process, including the sequence or partial sequence of a gene.

The following are not considered to be patentable inventions:

  • The essentially biological processes for the production, reproduction and propagation of plants and animals.
  • The biological and genetic material as found in nature.
  • The animal races.
  • The human body and the live parts comprising them.
  • The plant varieties.

The inventions whose commercial exploitation is contrary to the public order or morality are excluded from patentability, for example, methods for cloning humans, methods for modifying the germ genetic identity of the human and the use of human embryos for industrial or commercial purposes. Are also excluded from patentability, those methods for modifying the genetic identity of the animals.