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IP Roundup: Dec 14, 2010


BioArray Solutions of Warren, NJ, now part of Immucor, has received US Patent No. 7,848,889, "Automated analysis of multiplexed probe-target interaction patterns: pattern matching and allele identification." The patent claims methods and algorithms supporting the automated analysis and interactive review and refinement of the analysis within an integrated software environment, for automated allele assignments. According to the patent, the implementation of the analysis, preferably using a program referred to as the Automated Allele Assignment program, provides a multiplicity of functionalities including: data management by way of an integrated interface to a portable database to permit visualizing, importing, exporting and creating customizable summary reports; system configuration including user authorization, training set analysis and probe masking; pattern analysis including string matching and probe flipping; and interactive redaction combining real-time database computations and "cut-and-paste" editing, generating "warning" statements and supporting annotation. The program also includes a method of setting thresholds, a method of refining thresholds by matching an experimental binary string setting for that probe, and probe masking of signals produced by probes that do not contribute significantly to discriminating among alleles.

Samsung Electronics of Seoul has received US Patent No. 7,851,151, "HNF-1 alpha gene including novel single-nucleotide polymorphism, protein encoded by the HNF-1 alpha gene, and polynucleotide, microarray, kit, and method for diagnosis of MODY3." The patent claims a method for diagnosing MODY 3 diabetes, a form of maturity-onset diabetes of the young. The method relies on the detection of a claimed SNP and protein encoded by the HNF1A gene using a microarray. A diagnostic kit containing the necessary array and reagents is also provided.

The Tokyo Institute of Technology has received US Patent No. 7,851,157, "Oligonucleotide derivative, probe for detection of gene, and DNA chip." The patent claims an oligonucleotide derivative that can be used when a DNA probe has fallen from a support. A method of using such derivatives on microarrays in a method of detecting gene expression is also claimed.

The Japan Science and Technology Agency of Kawaguchi, Japan, has received US Patent No. 7,851,205, "DNA sensor." The patent describes a DNA sensor that includes a p-channel field-effect transistor, where the transistor has as a gate an electrolyte solution and as a channel a diamond surface containing a mixture of a hydrogen-terminated surface and a surface with an amino termination. According to the patent, a DNA probe can be directly immobilized by a linker to the amino termination of the diamond surface, and hybridization of the target and probe can be ascertained by detecting a shift of the threshold voltage of the p-channel field effect transistor toward a positive direction, due to an increase in the hole density of the p-channel that results from the doubling of the negative electric charge of the phosphate groups upon hybridization.

Corning of Corning, NY, has received US Patent No. 7,851,208, "Optical reader system and method for monitoring and correcting lateral and angular misalignments of label independent biosensors." The patent claims an optical reader system that can detect a lateral or angular misalignment of biosensors so that the biosensors can be properly relocated after being removed from and then reinserted into the optical reader system. In one embodiment, the biosensors are incorporated within the wells of a microplate.

The Scan

Shape of Them All

According to BBC News, researchers have developed a protein structure database that includes much of the human proteome.

For Flu and More

The Wall Street Journal reports that several vaccine developers are working on mRNA-based vaccines for influenza.

To Boost Women

China's Ministry of Science and Technology aims to boost the number of female researchers through a new policy, reports the South China Morning Post.

Science Papers Describe Approach to Predict Chemotherapeutic Response, Role of Transcriptional Noise

In Science this week: neural network to predict chemotherapeutic response in cancer patients, and more.