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IP Roundup: Apr 12, 2011

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Gore Enterprise Holdings of Newark, Del., has received US Patent No. 7,923,054, "Functional porous substrates for attaching biomolecules." The patent describes a substrate containing a microporous microstructure, an interlayer over a portion of the microstructure, and a functional layer attached to the interlayer that has functional sites with a specified density. The patent also claims a method of preparing a microarray substrate by a) providing a support layer; b) optionally functionalizing the support layer; c) disposing an adhesive on the support layer; d) attaching a microporous polytetrafluoroethylene substrate to the support layer via the adhesive; and e) functionalizing the microporous polytetrafluoroethylene substrate.


Intel of Santa Clara, Calif., has received US Patent No. 7,923,240, "Photo-activated field effect transistor for bioanalyte detection." The patent relates to a method for performing analyte detection, especially biomolecule detection. The method combines photo-induced charge separation in label materials and field effect transistors as sensors, resulting in more sensitive detections of biomolecules in multiplex assays, such as immunoassays and DNA microarray assays, according to the inventors. A device containing an array of electrical sensors, such as field effect transistors, and binding complexes for simultaneous multiplex detection of analytes, is also claimed.


Illumina of San Diego has received US Patent No. 7,923,260, "Method of reading encoded particles." The patent describes microparticles forming optical substrates that contain diffraction gratings. According to the patent, the gratings have a number of colocated pitches that represent a unique identification digital code that is detected when illuminated by incident light. The incident light may be directed transversely from the side of the substrate with a narrow band or multiple wavelength sources, in which case the code is represented by a spatial distribution of light or a wavelength spectrum, respectively. The code may be digital binary or may be other numerical bases. The microparticles can provide more than 67 million codes, and can withstand harsh environments, according to the patent. They are functionalized by coating them with a material or substance of interest, which are then used to perform multiplexed experiments involving chemical processes, such as DNA testing and combinatorial chemistry.

The Scan

UK Pilot Study Suggests Digital Pathway May Expand BRCA Testing in Breast Cancer

A randomized pilot study in the Journal of Medical Genetics points to similar outcomes for breast cancer patients receiving germline BRCA testing through fully digital or partially digital testing pathways.

Survey Sees Genetic Literacy on the Rise, Though Further Education Needed

Survey participants appear to have higher genetic familiarity, knowledge, and skills compared to 2013, though 'room for improvement' remains, an AJHG paper finds.

Study Reveals Molecular, Clinical Features in Colorectal Cancer Cases Involving Multiple Primary Tumors

Researchers compare mismatch repair, microsatellite instability, and tumor mutation burden patterns in synchronous multiple- or single primary colorectal cancers.

FarGen Phase One Sequences Exomes of Nearly 500 From Faroe Islands

The analysis in the European Journal of Human Genetics finds few rare variants and limited geographic structure among Faroese individuals.