The Massachusetts Institute of Technology has received US Patent No. 7,282,329, “Suspended microchannel detectors.” The patent claims an apparatus for detecting an analyte in solution where the solution contains a suspended beam containing at least one microfluidic channel containing a capture ligand that bonds to or reacts with an analyte. The apparatus also includes at least one detector for measuring a change in the beam upon binding or reaction of the analyte. A method of making the suspended microfluidic channels is claimed as well as a method of integrating the microfluidic device with conventional microfluidics having larger sample fluid channels.
Agilent Technologies, IBM, Affymetrix, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Agilent Technologies has received US Patent No. 7,282,183, “Atmospheric control in reaction chambers.” The patent claims an apparatus and methods for controlling atmospheric characteristics inside a chamber. The apparatus comprises a mechanism for diffusively introducing pressurized gas into the apparatus, an outlet element in fluid communication with the mechanism, and a chamber in fluid communication with the outlet element. The outlet element and the chamber are manufactured so that the gas flow-through is substantially uniform. The chamber includes a gas outlet and the outlet element includes a plurality of openings. According to the patent’s abstract, the apparatus may be employed in the manufacture of biopolymers on the surface of a support such as an array of biopolymer features on the support.
Agilent has also received US Patent No. 7,282,332, “Fabricating biopolymer arrays.” The patent describes a method and an apparatus for fabricating an array of biopolymers on a substrate using a biopolymer or biomonomer fluid and using a dispensing head. According to the patent, the dispensing head has a reservoir chamber and at least one jet that can dispense droplets onto the substrate. The jet includes a capillary delivery chamber communicating with the reservoir chamber, where the delivery chamber has an orifice. The jet also includes an ejector which, when activated, causes a droplet to be ejected from the orifice. The patented method calls for loading the head by positioning the head with the orifice adjacent and facing a biomonomer or biopolymer fluid, and providing a load pressure to the reservoir chamber. The load pressure is sufficiently negative so that the fluid is then drawn into the reservoir chamber through the orifice and delivery chamber. The head is finally positioned with the orifice facing the substrate and multiple droplets are dispensed from the head orifice so as to form an array of droplets on the substrate.
IBM has received US Patent No. 7,282,241, “Patterned, high surface area substrate with hydrophilic/hydrophobic contrast, and method of use.” The patent describes nanoporous structures that have hydrophilic regions separated by hydrophobic regions. The porous, hydrophilic regions have reaction sites suitable for use in a bioassay application and have a higher density of reaction sites than that of the non-porous, two-dimensional surface.
Affymetrix has received US Patent No. 7,282,327, “Nucleic acid labeling compounds.” The patent describes nucleic acid labeling compounds that are capable of being enzymatically incorporated into a nucleic acid. The nucleic acids to which the compounds are attached then are able to bind to a complementary nucleic acid sequence. More specifically, the patent claims heterocyclic derivatives containing a detectable moiety. It also describes methods of attaching the heterocyclic derivatives to a nucleic acid.