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Able Signal Company, Agilent Technologies, Picoliter, Aviva Biosciences

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Able Signal Company of Madison, Wis., has received US Patent No. 6,806,954, “Microarray detector and synthesizer.” The patent covers novel systems, devices, and methods comprising spatial light modulators for use in the reading and synthesis of microarrays. For example, the present invention provides micromirror systems for synthesizing and acquiring data from nucleic acid microarrays and systems for collecting, processing, and analyzing data obtained from a microarray.


Agilent Technologies of Palo Alto, Calif., has received US Patent No. 6,806,460, “Fluorescence detection with increased dynamic range.” The patent covers a light-detection system that includes at least two light-detection elements. Each element is responsive to a selected light color in a first mode, and each element has a different sensitivity and is responsive to a single color in a second mode for enhanced dynamic range. A preferred embodiment includes four light detectors for responding to four separate colors or for responding with enhanced dynamic range to two colors. Embodiments are disclosed using a mirror/beam splitter arrangement to switch between modes and an embodiment including dichroic filters serving as fractional beam splitters.


Picoliter of Sunnyvale, Calif., has received US Patent No. 6,806,051, “Arrays of partially nonhybridizing oligonucleotides and preparation thereof using focused acoustic energy.” The patent covers partially nonhybridizing oligonucleotides that contain two or more hybridizing segments, with any two hybridizing segments separated by a nonhybridizing spacer segment, i.e., a nucleotidic or nonnucleotidic segment that has little or no likelihood of binding to an oligonucleotide sequence found in nature. Oligonucleotide arrays are also provided, in which at least one of the oligonucleotides of the array is a partially nonhybridizing oligonucleotide. A particularly preferred method of array fabrication involves the use of focused acoustic energy.


Aviva Biosciences of San Diego has received US Patent No. 6,806,050, “Individually addressable micro-electromagnetic unit array chips.” The patent covers electromagnetic chips and electromagnetic biochips having arrays of individually addressable micro-electromagnetic units, as well as methods of utilizing these chips for directed manipulation of micro-particles and micro-structures such as biomolecules and chemical reagents.

The Scan

Driving Malaria-Carrying Mosquitoes Down

Researchers from the UK and Italy have tested a gene drive for mosquitoes to limit the spread of malaria, NPR reports.

Office Space to Lab Space

The New York Times writes that some empty office spaces are transforming into lab spaces.

Prion Pause to Investigate

Science reports that a moratorium on prion research has been imposed at French public research institutions.

Genome Research Papers on Gut Microbe Antibiotic Response, Single-Cell RNA-Seq Clues to Metabolism, More

In Genome Research this week: gut microbial response to antibiotic treatment, approach to gauge metabolic features from single-cell RNA sequencing, and more.