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IP Roundup: Apr 21, 2009


PerkinElmer has received US Patent No. 7,521,245, "Method for washing and drying pins in microarray spotting instruments." The patent claims an apparatus that includes an array of chambers, each for receiving one of the pins of a spotting instrument. To wash the pins, streams of wash fluid are directed at the pins. To dry the pins, a gas is flowed over pin surfaces. Pins can therefore be washed and dried without having to be moved, the patent states. The gas used in drying the pins is preferably air of low humidity from outside an enclosure containing the spotting instrument in order to reduce drying time.

Samsung Electronics has received US Patent No. 7,521,246, "Cell lysis by heating-cooling process through endothermic reaction." The patent describes a cell lysis method that includes: a) preparing a cell sample to be lysed; b) heating the cell sample; and c) cooling the cell sample by causing an endothermic reaction near the cell sample. According to the method, cell lysis can be performed without regard to location and without additional devices, since a separate energy source is not required and the apparatus is portable. The patent adds that, when cell lysis is performed in a biochip using a small amount of sample, a greater cell lysis effect can be obtained.

Vanderbilt University of Nashville, Tenn., has received US Patent No. 7,521,261, "Method for screening molecular interactions." The patent claims systems and methods for screening molecular interactions using a filamentous-based platform for molecule presentation. The claimed method of detecting target-probe interactions includes: a) providing a filament with a probe; b) traversing the filament through a chamber, where the chamber contains the target in solution; and c) assessing binding of the target to the probe.

Able Signal of Madison, Wis., has received US Patent No. 7,522,271, "Microarray detector and synthesizer." The patent provides a system for detecting the presence of a sample on a microarray using: a) a spatial light modulator with controllable elements configured to correspond optically with analytical sites on a microarray; b) a light source capable of providing light energy for interaction with the chemical constituents on the array; and c) a detector capable of detecting an optical signal obtained from the microarray. Potential samples include nucleic acids, molecular complexes, and reactive complexes.

Purdue Research Foundation of West Lafayette, Ind., has received US Patent No. 7,522,282, "Molecular interferometric imaging process and apparatus." The patent claims a molecular interferometric imaging system for detecting an analyte in a sample. The system includes: a) an illumination source providing a beam of radiation; b) a pixel array for detecting radiation in an image plane; c) a biolayer designed to react to the analyte when it comes in contact with the sample; d) a substrate designed to convert phase modulation into intensity modulation which can be detected and imaged directly by the pixel array, the biolayer being on the substrate; e) a reference surface; f) an image-switching means for switching between a first position for collecting a sample image of the biolayer, and a second position for collecting a reference image of the reference surface; and g) a processing means for producing a composite image using the sample image and the reference image for illumination normalization.

The Scan

Just Breathing

A new analysis suggests that most Mycobacterium tuberculosis is spread by aerosols from breathing, rather than by coughing, the New York Times reports.

Just Like This One

NPR reports that the World Health Organization has hired a South African biotech company to recreate mRNA vaccine for SARS-CoV-2 that is similar to the one developed by Moderna.

Slow Start

The Wall Street Journal reports that Biogen's Alzheimer's disease treatment had revenues for July through September that totaled $300,000.

Genome Research Papers on Cancer Chromatin, Splicing in the Thymus, Circular RNAs in Cancer

In Genome Research this week: analysis of bivalent chromatin sites, RBFOX splicing factors' role in thymic epithelial cells, and more.