This course – the first of its kind at Columbia – introduces students to a vital subfield of ethics focusing on patent and regulatory law in the biotech and pharmaceutical sectors. The course combines lectures, structured debate, and research to best present this fascinating and nuanced subject. Properly exploring this branch of bioethics requires an in-depth understanding of biotech and pharmaceutical patent and regulatory law. Students can gain this understanding by first completing Biotechnology Law (BIOT GU4160), formerly the prerequisite for this course. Now, they can also gain it by reading the appropriate chapters of Biotechnology Law: A Primer for Scientists (the textbook for BIOT GU4160 published earlier this year) prior to each class. A number of students in the biotechnology fields (such as those in biotechnology, biomedical engineering, and bioethics programs) have shown a keen interest over the years in taking this course, yet were unable to do so because they hadn’t taken BIOT GU4160. Given the recent publication of Biotechnology Law and the desirability of making BIOT GU4161 accessible to more students having the appropriate science background, BIOT GU4160 has been removed as a prerequisite.
Department of Biological Sciences
500 Fairchild Center
Mail Code 2401
1212 Amsterdam Avenue
New York, NY 10027