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Monsanto, UT-Battelle, Packard Instrument

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Monsanto has received US Patent No. 6,448,387, “Polymeric arrays adapted for high expressing polynucleotides.” The patent covers arrays in which the molecules are arranged according to hybridization intensity. The target molecules with “a higher than average indicia of hybridization” are at a lower-density area on the “peripheral region” of the substrate. These arrays can include probes for various species of plants and animals, as well as the fungus Aspergillus nidulans, and can include more than one species on a single array.

UT-Battelle, the non-profit operating company for Oak Ridge National Labs, has received US Patent No. 6,448,064, “Integrated circuit biochip microsystem.” The patent covers a DNA biosensor that is designed to detect hybridized DNA, using DNA probes, microlasers, electro-optics, a sampling waveguide, and a biotelemetric radio frequency signal generator. The system is miniaturized and was conceived as a cost-effective and rapid way to produce biochips for nucleic acid detection.

Packard Instrument (now PerkinElmer) has won US Patent No. 6,447,723, “Microarray spotting instruments incorporating sensors and methods of using sensors for improving performance of microarray spotting instruments.” The patent describes a spotting instrument with sensors that can detect whether the substrate and the reservoir are mounted for proper printing.

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.