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Applying for a patent

Patentability What are the criteria for patentability in your jurisdiction? To be patentable, an invention must be new, involve an inventive step and be capable of industrial application.

What are the limits on patentability? The following are excluded from patentability:

  • discoveries, scientific theories or mathematical methods;
  • literary, dramatic, musical or artistic works;
  • schemes, rules or methods for performing mental acts, playing games or doing business;
  • some computer programs;
  • presentation of information;
  • methods of treatment for, or methods of diagnosis practised on, humans or animals;
  • the discovery of a gene sequence, unless the industrial application of the discovery is disclosed;
  • use of human embryos for industrial or commercial purposes; and
  • animal or plant varieties, or any essentially biological process for their production.

Are there restrictions on any other kinds of invention? Inventions whose commercial exploitation would be contrary to public policy or morality are excluded from patentability – for example, processes for cloning humans or modifying the genetic identity of animals that are likely to cause harm without substantial medical benefit.

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