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Edward Lam, Ronald Lam, Applera, Affymetrix

Edward Lam of Santa Clara, Calif., and Ronald Lam of Barrington, Ill., have received US Patent No. 7,405,056, “Tissue punch and tissue sample labeling methods and devices for microarray preparation, archiving and documentation.” The patent describes a workstation that provides an efficient method to collect biological tissues in a column tissue array format from blocks of embedded, frozen tissues, or fresh tissues. The claimed workstation includes a control unit for directing operations of the workstation and the operation unit for performing the production of the tissue column array. The operation unit comprises: a) an array of vertical tubes in a platform; b) an arbor which engages and presses down the designated tube in the array; c) the embedded tissue block which is mounted directly below the designated tube; d) assemblies of motors responsive to the control unit for driving the platform and the tissue block; e) a light source block for generating an alignment signal; and f) a light detector block which measures the signal from the light source to determine the degree of alignment between the arbor, punch tubes, and the specimen block.

Applera has received US Patent No. 7,405,823, “Signal noise reduction for imaging in biological analysis.” The patent claims a system and method for characterizing contributions to signal noise associated with charge-coupled devices adapted for use in biological analysis. Dark current contribution, readout offset contribution, photo response non-uniformity, and spurious charge contribution can be determined by the methods of the patent and used for signal correction in nucleotide sequencing, microarray processing, sequence detection, and high-throughput screening.

Affymetrix has received US Patent No. 7,406,391, “System, method, and computer product for detection instrument calibration.” The patent claims a method of determining a drift value that includes: a) performing one or more X-axis translations of an excitation beam over a probe array; b) measuring light responsive to the excitation beam from at least two positional reference elements associated with the probe array for the X-axis translations; c) calculating a distance value for the X-axis translation using a positional relationship of a known location associated with each of the positional reference elements and positions of the positional reference elements from the measured light; and d) determining a drift value using a difference between the calculated distance value and an expected distance value.

The Scan

Response Too Slow, Cautious

A new report criticizes the global response to the threat of the COVID-19 pandemic, Nature News reports.

Pushed a Bit Later

Novavax has pushed back its timeline for filing for authorization for its SARS-CoV-2 vaccine, according to Bloomberg.

AMA Announces Anti-Racism Effort

The Associated Press reports that the American Medical Association has released a plan to address systemic racism in healthcare.

Nucleic Acids Research Papers on miRMaster 2.0, MutationTaster2021, LipidSuite

In Nucleic Acids Research this week: tool to examine small non-coding RNAs, approach to predict ramifications of DNA variants, and more.