Rhetoric of Anonymity and Property Rights in Human Biological Materials (HBMs)

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9 Citazioni (Scopus)


According to Boyle, the body is taking on, through the neo-colonisation engendered by science, the market and the law, a completely new symbolic form, consisting in its progressive de-materialisation and its ability to be completely represented in terms of information. Science, law, and the market seem to share this vision of the body. The construction of the body as information is the strategy to overcome the legal qualification of human biological materials (HBMs) as non-marketable entities, res extra commercium. This means that the subject-of-the-body has no property rights to his/her biological materials, but only the right to informed consent both to decisions concerning his/her health and to the commercial exploitation of HBMs. Researchers and industry have a right to get for free te HBMs as if these materials were abandoned (res derelictae) or not belonging to anyone (res nullius).
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)153-175
Numero di pagine23
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2005


  • anonymity
  • biological materials
  • law
  • property rights


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