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Lynx Therapeutics, Geron, Packard Biochip Technologies, Aviva Biosciences, PE Corporation, Affymetrix, Illumina


Lynx Therapeutics said last week that it had sold its worldwide oligonucleotide patent estate to Geron, the stem-cell development company, for approximately $2.5 million in cash and stock. These patents cover process and compositional matter related to oligos containing N3’-P5’ phosphoramidate backbone linkages.

According to Lynx, these oligos, developed through the company’s Megaclone technology, have been shown to form sequence-specific stable complexes with both RNA and DNA, and are believed to be highly resistant to nucleases. Additionally, they may have applications in antisense and antigene therapeutic drug discovery and target validation, and are being investigated as potential therapeutic and diagnostic agents.

Geron, of Menlo Park, Calif., will also receive a manufacturing process patent for its telomerase inhibitor GRN163, which is now in preclinical development as an anti-cancer agent. “These molecules have demonstrated high target specificity and affinity, highlighting their potential for use as efficient and less toxic therapeutic agents for treating cancer and other diseases,” Geron said in a statement.


Packard Biochip Technologies, now part of PerkinElmer, was awarded US Patent Number 6,355,934, “Imaging system for an optical scanner.” This imaging system includes at least three sources for exitation radiation of different wavelengths of light, as well as a lens to focus these wavelengths onto a sample, and a geometric beamsplitting mirror that directs the emission radiation toward a detector, and the other exitation away from the detector.


Aviva Biosciences of San Diego has received US Patent Number 6,355,491, “Individually addressable micro-electromagnetic unit array chips.” The patent covers electromagnetic biochips with reaction sites that can be individually addressed, and methods to use these chips to manipulate biomolecules and other micro-particles.


PE Corporation, (now Applera), was awarded US Patent Number 6, 355,487, “Apparatus and method for transferring small volumes of substances.” The invention provides methods for depositing reagents on substrates along a defined axis, as with high-density spotted microarrays.


Affymetrix has received US Patent Number 6,355,432, “Products for detecting nucleic acids.” The invention describes methods for mapping, sequencing, and fingerprinting biological macromolecules that use sequence-specific reagents. These methods can also be used to classify and trace the sources of biological samples.


Illumina of San Diego received US Patent Number 6,355,431, “Detection of nucleic acid amplification reactions using bead arrays.” The invention covers methods that use signal- and target-amplification techniques to detect and quantify target nucleic acids.

The Scan

And Back

The New York Times reports that missing SARS-CoV-2 genome sequences are back in a different database.

Lacks Family Hires Attorney

A lawyer for the family of Henrietta Lacks plans to seek compensation from pharmaceutical companies that have used her cancer cells in product development, the Baltimore Sun reports.

For the Unknown

The Associated Press reports that family members are calling on the US military to use new DNA analysis techniques to identify unknown sailors and Marines who were on the USS Arizona.

PLOS Papers on Congenital Heart Disease, COVID-19 Infection Host MicroRNAs, Multiple Malformation Mutations

In PLOS this week: new genes linked to congenital heart disease, microRNAs with altered expression in COVID-19, and more.