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Agilent Technologies, Affymetrix, The United States of America, and Epigenomics


Agilent Technologies of Palo Alto, Calif., has received US Patent No. 6,935,727, "Pulse jet print head assembly having multiple reservoirs and methods for use in the manufacture of biopolymeric arrays." The patent describes pulse jet print head assemblies having multiple reservoirs and multiple print head dyes. Methods for their use in the deposition of fluids, typically fluids containing a biopolymer onto a substrate surface are also described. The patented printheads are characterized by having a multiple dye printhead and a reservoir housing affixed to the multiple die printhead The patented printhead assemblies can be used in a variety of applications including production of biopolymeric arrays.

Agilent has also received US Patent No. 6,936,472, "Method for synthesizing a specific, surface-bound polymer uniformly over an element of a molecular array." The patent describes a method for synthesizing desired polymers within molecular array elements. Droplets containing a reactive monomer are successively applied to the elements of a molecular array in order to synthesize a substrate-bound polymer, the patent states. The application of an initial droplet, having a first volume, defines the position and size of a molecular array element. Subsequent droplets are applied, to add successive reactive monomers to growing polymers within the molecular array element. Following application of initial droplets, the surface of the molecular array is exposed to a solution containing a capping agent in order to chemically cap any un-reacted polymers and any un-reacted substrate molecules.

Affymetrix of Santa Clara, Calif., has received US Patent No. 6,936,416, "Expression monitoring for human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) infection." Methods, compositions, and an apparatus for studying the complex regulatory relationships among host genes and viruses, in particular HCMV are described in the patent. The patent also describes methods for identifying drugs for preventing or ameliorating disease symptoms caused by HCMV as well as methods for determining the stage of infection or the extent of tissue damage caused by HCMV infection.

The United States of America of Washington, DC, has received US Patent No. 6,936,311, "Generation of biomaterial microarrays by laser transfer." The patent describes a method for creating a microarray of biomaterial using laser energy, a receiving substrate, and a target substrate. According to the patent, the method uses laser technology to desorb material from the target substrate and deposit it onto the receiving substrate. The composite material is deposited in a microarray of deposited composite material. The method can be used in creating gene recognition arrays, the patent states.

Epigenomics of Berlin has received US Patent No. 6,936,419, "Oligomer array with PNA and/or DNA oligomers on a surface." The patent describes an oligomer array with peptide nucleic acid and/or DNA oligomers on a surface where oligomers of between 6 and 20 monomers or nucleobases each contains at least one sequence of four specific sequences that can be used for the detection of cytosine methylations in genomic DNA.


The Scan

Pig Organ Transplants Considered

The Wall Street Journal reports that the US Food and Drug Administration may soon allow clinical trials that involve transplanting pig organs into humans.

'Poo-Bank' Proposal

Harvard Medical School researchers suggest people should bank stool samples when they are young to transplant when they later develop age-related diseases.

Spurred to Develop Again

New Scientist reports that researchers may have uncovered why about 60 percent of in vitro fertilization embryos stop developing.

Science Papers Examine Breast Milk Cell Populations, Cerebral Cortex Cellular Diversity, Micronesia Population History

In Science this week: unique cell populations found within breast milk, 100 transcriptionally distinct cell populations uncovered in the cerebral cortex, and more.