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EP 578653 B1 - Gene construct for production of transgenic fish


EP 578653 B1  WO 9216618

Title: Gene construct for production of transgenic fish

Proprietor: Seabright Corporation (Can); HSC Ressearch Development

Status: granted

Claims: genetically engineered fish, gene for faster growth, and anti-freeze.


In 2001, the European Patent Office (EPO) granted a patent on genetically engineered fish for the first time. The Canadian company Seabright received patent EP 578 653 on Atlantic Salmon and all other fish species carrying an additional gene for faster growth. In the patent the company reports on experiments leading to fish growing eight times faster than normal salmons.

Genetically engineered fish have the potential to be invasive species and could cause irreversible damage to wild fish stocks and ecological damage to the wider marine environment. Many leading fisheries biologists have expressed strong concerns as have European Governments and fisheries organisations. Yet the granting of this patent encourages the commercialisation of these ´monster´ fish by awarding the company exclusive ownership on any future GE fish with the growth hormone gene. This increases the financial incentive for Seabright (A/F Proteins) to commercialise GE fish.

Seabright has licensed the use of the GE growth hormone technology to their sister company, A/F Proteins. A/F Proteins has recently applied to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for commercialisation of the worlds first GE fish, a GE salmon. A/F Proteins claim to have 15 million GE fish eggs ready for sale to fish farms around the world if approved by FDA.



Disclaimer: The documents presented here for download are copies of those from the European Patent Office (EPO) and the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). Legally binding are only the originals available from the organizations themselves.


WO...  numbers are world patent applications, at WIPO

EP... numbers are European Patents 

EP...A. numbers are European patent applications 

EP....B1 numbers are European Patents as granted

EP....B2 numbers are patents as granted after the closure of a dispute

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Opposition is the First Instance

Appeal is the Second Instance

Enlarged Board of Appeal is the highest court within the EPO, which has the final say.