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Expression Diagnostics, Applera, The United States of America, Agilent, Vitra Bioscience


Expression Diagnostics of South San Francisco, Calif., has received US Patent No. 6,905,827, "Methods and compositions for diagnosing or monitoring auto-immune and chronic inflammatory diseases." The patented invention identifies genes and gene sets that have clinical utility as diagnostic tools for the management of transplant recipients, lupus patients and patients with a variety of chronic inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. The patent also describes a method of diagnosing or monitoring chronic autoimmune or inflammatory disease in a patient. In one format, expression is detected by measuring RNA levels or protein levels from the genes. In another format, the gene expression system is immobilized on an array. The array may be a chip array, a plate array, a bead array, a pin array, a membrane array, a solid surface array, a liquid array, an oligonucleotide array, a polynucleotide array, a cDNA array, a microfilter plate, a membrane, or a chip.

Applera Corporation of Foster City, Calif., has received US Patent No. 6,905,826, "Methods and compositions for microarray control." The patent describes an assay for detecting or determining the amount of target molecules in a sample. In certain embodiments, the patented assay is run on nucleic acid arrays and controls used in such arrays. The patent also describes experiment controls that comprise nucleic acid sequence control probes included in each feature on the array, which provides a control signal that indicates the amount of probe attached. The experimental probes on any given feature may have the same sequence for hybridization to a specific target sequence in the sample. Also, the patent states that any given feature may contain more than one different experimental probe sequence for hybridization to different target sequences in the sample. Kits comprising an array and signal control target for measuring the signal and the attached probe are also described in the patent.

The United States of America of Washington, DC, has received US Patent No. 6,905,738, "Generation of viable cell active biomaterial patterns by laser transfer." The patent describes methods for depositing a transfer material on a receiving substrate wherein a pattern of deposited composite material can be created directly on the receiving substrate without the use of a mask, by using laser-induced deposition wherein the spatial resolution of the deposited composite material can be as small as 1 µm. According to the patent, the source of laser energy is positioned in a spaced relation to the target substrate so that the laser energy will strike the composite material at a defined target location and so that the laser has sufficient energy to cause the removal of the composite material from the support surface as well as the deposition of the material at a defined receiving location on the receiving substrate.

Agilent Technologies of Palo Alto, Calif., has received US Patent No. 6,909,970, "Fast microarray expression data analysis method for network exploration." The patent describes a method for determining a predictor set of features associated with a target. The method comprises the steps of selecting a predictor set of features, adding a complement to the predictor set based on a quality of prediction, checking to see if all of the features of the predictor set are repeated and then removing one feature from the predictor set. The algorithm and method repeats the steps of adding, checking and removing features until the features of the predictor set are repeated. If the features of the predictor set are repeated, the algorithm and method terminate. In each cycle, the comparisons are based on a quality function that determines a quality of prediction associated between the predictors and the target. The method can easily be extended to probabilistically determine the smallest subset of features that are closely related to a given target within an a priori set tolerance level in terms of a selected quality function. The method can also be used for classification of experiments and can then be used to identify a subset of features that can classify the data.

Vitra Bioscience of Mountain View, Calif., has received US Patent No. 6,908,737, "Systems and methods of conducting multiplexed experiments." The patent describes a method for multiplexed detection and quantification of analytes by reacting them with probe molecules attached to specific and identifiable carriers. According to the patent, these carriers can be of different size, shape, color, and composition. Different probe molecules are attached to different types of carriers prior to analysis. After the reaction takes place, the carriers can be automatically analyzed. The patent goes on to state that the analytes are identified by their association with the defined carrier, and not (or not only) by their position. Moreover, patent claims that the use of carriers provides a more homogenous and reproducible representation for probe molecules and reaction products than two-dimensional imprinted arrays or DNA chips.

The Scan

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