Courthouse Steps Oral Argument: Illumina v. FTC

A Regulatory Transparency Project Webinar

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In September, a panel of judges on the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals heard oral argument in Illumina v. Federal Trade Commission. Earlier this year, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) ordered biotechnology company Illumina to unwind its $8 billion acquisition of Grail, a cancer-screening startup. This case began with a 2021 administrative complaint challenging the transaction. In September 2022, the FTC’s administrative law judge (FTC) concluded that the FTC “failed to prove its asserted prima facie case that Illumina’s post-Acquisition ability and incentive to advantage Grail to the disadvantage of Grail’s alleged rivals is likely to result in a substantial lessening of competition in the relevant market.” The FTC complaint counsel appealed the decision of the ALJ to the commissioners, who then voted to overturn the ALJ’s decision, ordering Illumina to divest the acquisition. The case is now pending before the Fifth Circuit.

Please join us as we break down oral argument and discuss the broader implications of Illumina v. FTC.


  • Ashley Baker, Director of Public Policy, Committee for Justice
  • John B. Kirkwood, Professor of Law, Seattle University School of Law
  • Moderator: Adam Mossoff, Professor of Law, Antonin Scalia Law School, George Mason University


As always, the Federalist Society takes no position on particular legal or public policy issues; all expressions of opinion are those of the speaker.