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IP Roundup: Jul 20, 2010

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UT-Battelle has received US Patent No. 7,759,057, "Method for analyzing microbial communities." The patent provides a method for quantitatively analyzing microbial genes, species, or strains in a sample that contains at least two species or strains of microorganisms. The method involves using an isothermal DNA polymerase to randomly and representatively amplify genomic DNA of the microorganisms in the sample; hybridizing the resultant polynucleotide amplification product to a polynucleotide microarray that can differentiate different genes, species, or strains of microorganisms of interest; and measuring hybridization signals on the microarray to quantify the genes, species, or strains of interest.


Third Wave Technologies of Madison, Wis., has received US Patent No. 7,759,062, "T-structure invasive cleavage assays, consistent nucleic acid dispensing, and low level target nucleic acid detection." The patent describes a system for the low-level detection of nucleic acids, detecting at least two different viral sequences in a single reaction vessel, and increasing the dynamic range of detection of a viral target nucleic acid in a sample. The patent also describes T-structure invasive cleavage assays, as well as T-structure related target dependent non-target amplification methods. Systems for consistent nucleic acid dispensing onto surfaces are also claimed.


NIGU Chemie of Waldkraiburg, Germany, has received US Patent No. 7,759,513, "Photolabile protective groups for improved processes to prepare oligonucleotide arrays." The patent describes nucleosidic and nucleotidic compounds that are useful in the light-directed synthesis of oligonucleotides. The compounds are characterized by photolabile protective groups that are attached to either the 5'- or the 3'-hydroxyl group of a nucleoside moiety. The photolabile protective group is comprised of a 2-(2-nitrophenyl)-ethyoxycarbonyl skeleton with at least one substituent on the aromatic ring that is an aryl, an aroyl, a heteroaryl or an alkoxycarbonyl group. The patent also describes the use of the compounds in light-directed oligonucleotide synthesis, the respective assembly of nucleic acid microarrays, and their application.


The Korean Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute of Daejeon has received US Patent No. 7,760,274, "Programmable mask for fabricating biomolecule array or polymer array, apparatus for fabricating biomolecule array or polymer array including the programmable mask, and method of fabricating biomolecule array or polymer array using the programmable mask." The patent claims a programmable mask for fabricating a high-density biomolecule or polymer array. The mask includes a first substrate containing a black matrix with openings and first pixel electrodes; a second substrate containing thin-film transistors for switching pixel regions that correspond to the openings according to applied electric signals and second pixel electrodes connected to drain electrodes of the thin film transistors; a liquid crystal layer interposed between the first substrate and the second substrate; a first polarizing plate laminated on one side of the first substrate; a second polarizing plate laminated on one side of the second substrate; and a lens array layer laminated on one side of the second polarizing plate including lenses that correspond to the pixel regions.


IBM has received US Patent No. 7,761,461, "Method and system for relationship building from XML." The patent claims a method, system and article of manufacture for relationship building based on text-based markup languages and, more specifically, for representing relationships between data elements defined according to a first physical representation of data in a logical representation. The logical representation abstractly describes a second physical representation of the data, which is generated from the first physical representation of the data, according to the patent. On the basis of the relationships between the data elements, logical relationships each defining a path between data structures of the second physical representation can be determined and associated with the logical representation. According to the patent, two text-based markup languages that make use of the invention are the eXtended Markup Language and the MicroArray Gene Expression Markup Language.

The Scan

Interfering With Invasive Mussels

The Chicago Tribune reports that researchers are studying whether RNA interference- or CRISPR-based approaches can combat invasive freshwater mussels.

Participation Analysis

A new study finds that women tend to participate less at scientific meetings but that some changes can lead to increased involvement, the Guardian reports.

Right Whales' Decline

A research study plans to use genetic analysis to gain insight into population decline among North American right whales, according to CBC.

Science Papers Tie Rare Mutations to Short Stature, Immunodeficiency; Present Single-Cell Transcriptomics Map

In Science this week: pair of mutations in one gene uncovered in brothers with short stature and immunodeficiency, and more.