The Canadian Privacy Law Blog: Developments in privacy law and writings of a Canadian privacy lawyer, containing information related to the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (aka PIPEDA) and other Canadian and international laws.

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The author of this blog, David T.S. Fraser, is a Canadian privacy lawyer who practices with the firm of McInnes Cooper. He is the author of the Physicians' Privacy Manual. He has a national and international practice advising corporations and individuals on matters related to Canadian privacy laws.

For full contact information and a brief bio, please see David's profile.

Please note that I am only able to provide legal advice to clients. I am not able to provide free legal advice. Any unsolicited information sent to David Fraser cannot be considered to be solicitor-client privileged.

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The views expressed herein are solely the author's and should not be attributed to his employer or clients. Any postings on legal issues are provided as a public service, and do not constitute solicitation or provision of legal advice. The author makes no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained herein or linked to. Nothing herein should be used as a substitute for the advice of competent counsel.

This web site is presented for informational purposes only. These materials do not constitute legal advice and do not create a solicitor-client relationship between you and David T.S. Fraser. If you are seeking specific advice related to Canadian privacy law or PIPEDA, contact the author, David T.S. Fraser.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Owner of massive genomics database goes bankrupt. What will happen to the data? 

The owners of one of the largest databases of genomics information and biological samples, in Iceland, has gone bankrupt.

The article in Nature says that the database and the samples cannot be sold, but it remains to be seen what will happen with this trove of incredibly valuable and deeply sensitive personal information.

Icelandic genomics firm goes bankrupt : Nature News

... deCODE intends to sell most of its assets, including its drug-discovery and development services and the unit that conducts its genetic research, to Saga Investments, a US venture-capital-backed company, unless a better offer is made. The database and biological samples themselves cannot be sold, Stefánsson says, because of legal restrictions on their use. He says that the Wellcome Trust in Britain had approached deCODE to try to fund a non-profit institute to manage the database in Iceland, but was unable to do so.

"The database will never be managed by a foreign organization," he says. "The data are sensitive. We are a proud nation, and the data are not for others to manage."

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