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IP Roundup: Jan 19, 2010


Searete of Bellevue, Wash., has received US Patent No. 7,648,823, "Systems for genome selection." The patent describes a method for genomic selection that includes: a) hybridizing probes in vitro to nucleic acid sequences of male germ line haploid genomes; b) determining the genetic characteristics of the male germ line haploid genomes; and c) selecting male germ line haploid genomes based on those genetic characteristics.

Wayne Moore of Columbia, Md., has received US Patent No. 7,648,834, "Plasmon fluorescence augmentation for chemical and biological testing apparatus." The patent claims a structure for plasmon-resonance augmentation of fluorescent emission from fluorescent molecules. The structure includes a substrate; a nanostructured film of silver, copper, titanium, aluminum, chromium, or tungsten metal deposited on the top of the substrate; and a spacer layer of optically transparent material deposited on top of the nanostructured film. According to the patent, the spacer layer is composed of aqueous impervious material capable of protecting the nanostructured film from degradation by aqueous media, and has a physical thickness of about 50 nanometers to about 400 nanometers. The plasmon-resonance fluorescent emission augmentation is a function of the thickness of the spacer layer and the dielectric properties of the metal surface, and the plasmon resonance fluorescent emission augmentation is in the range of 20-fold or greater, the patent states.

George Mason Intellectual Properties of Fairfax, Va., has received US Patent No. 7,650,024, "Dissipative functional microarrays for classification." The patent claims a technique of extracting information from signals. Using this technique, the user is allowed to: a) select a classifier and a figure of merit for quantifying classification quality; b) select a transform to generate features from input data; c) use a recursive process of functional dissipation to generate dissipative features from features that are generated according to the transform; d) search for dissipative features that maximize the figure of merit on a training set; and e) classify a test set with the classifier by using one or more of the dissipative features. Functional dissipation uses the transforms recursively by generating random masking functions and extracting features with one or more generalized matching pursuit iterations, according to the patent.

Penn State Research Foundation of University Park, Penn., has received US Patent No. 7,650,242, "Method and system for modeling cellular metabolism." The patent relates to methods and systems for in silico or bioinformatic modeling of cellular metabolism. It includes methods and systems for modeling cellular metabolism of an organism by constructing a flux-balance analysis model and applying constraints to the flux-balance analysis model. The constraints applied are selected from a set consisting of qualitative kinetic information constraints, qualitative regulatory information constraints, and differential DNA microarray experimental data constraints. In addition, the patent provides for computational procedures for solving metabolic problems.

The Scan

Booster Push

New data shows a decline in SARS-CoV-2 vaccine efficacy over time, which the New York Times says Pfizer is using to argue its case for a booster, even as the lower efficacy remains high.

With Help from Mr. Fluffington, PurrhD

Cats could make good study animals for genetic research, the University of Missouri's Leslie Lyons tells the Atlantic.

Man Charged With Threatening to Harm Fauci, Collins

The Hill reports that Thomas Patrick Connally, Jr., was charged with making threats against federal officials.

Nature Papers Present Approach to Find Natural Products, Method to ID Cancer Driver Mutations, More

In Nature this week: combination of cryogenic electron microscopy with genome mining helps uncover natural products, driver mutations in cancer, and more.