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Seok Lew, Agentase, US Navy, TheraSense, Kyocera, Protein Design Labs, Nanosphere


Seok Lew of Salt Lake City, Utah, received US Patent No. 6,751,491, “Analyte measuring biosensor chip using image scanning system.” The patent covers an implantable chip biosensor for detecting an analyte in vivo in body fluids. The technology comprises an analyte-sensitive hydrogel slab chemically configured to vary its displacement volume according to changes in concentration of an analyte, such as glucose, in a patient’s body fluid. The biosensor chip is read by an external scanner configured to quantifiably detect changes in the displacement volume of the hydrogel slab. The support block is made of rigid or semi-rigid support material to restrain expansion of the hydrogel in all but one dimension, and a groove that has one or more openings covered with a semipermeable membrane to allow contact between the patient’s body fluid and the hydrogel. The scanning means may be any type of imaging devices such as an ultrasound scanner, a magnetic resonance imager (MRI), or a computerized tomographic scanner (CT) capable of resolving changes in the slab’s dimensions.

Agentase of Pittsburgh received US Patent No. 6,750,033, “Positive response biosensors and other sensors.” The patent covers a sensor for detecting an analyte in an environment. The technology includes a reaction system with an enzyme and a substrate for it. The analyte inhibits the reaction of the substrate catalyzed by the first enzyme. The sensor also includes at least a second reaction system that reacts to produce a first detectable state when the first enzyme is inhibited. In some embodiments, the reaction of the first reaction system can produce a second detectable state, different from the first detectable state. The sensor also includes at least a second reaction system that reacts to produce a first detectable state when the analyte is below a certain concentration. The sensor thus provides a positive or detectable response when the analyte is absent or deficient.

The US Navy received US Patent No. 6,750,031, “Displacement assay on a porous membrane.” The patent covers a system for a displacement assay, performed under non-equilibrium conditions, by flowing a liquid sample through a membrane having binding elements with binding sites saturated with a labeled form of the analyte. The analyte in the sample displaces the labeled form of the analyte from the membrane. The displaced labeled form of the analyte may then be detected.

TheraSense of Alameda, Calif., received US Patent No. 6,749,740, “Small volume in vitro analyte sensor and methods.” The patent covers a small volume sensor, and methods of making it, for determining the concentration of an analyte, such as glucose or lactate, in a biological fluid, such as blood or serum, using techniques such as coulometry, amperometry, and potentiometry. The sensor includes a working electrode and a counter electrode, and can include an insertion monitoring trace to determine correct positioning of the sensor in a connector. In one embodiment, the sensor determines the concentration of the analyte by discharging an amount of charge into the sample, determining the time needed to discharge the charge, and determining the current used to electrolyze a portion of the analyte using the amount of charge and the amount of time.

Kyocera of Kyoto, Japan, received US Patent No. 6,749,731, “Gene detection chip and detection device.” The patent covers a chip capable of detecting large amounts of genes with high sensitivity. The chip comprises a number of pins as measurement electrodes, as well as a common electrode, and a tabular member with a number of pin holes for accommodating the pins. An arrangement may be adopted in which the diameters of the pin holes taper off in the direction that the pins are inserted, and the pins are held in place in the narrowest sections of the pin holes.

Protein Design Labs received US Patent No. 6,750,013, “Methods for detection and diagnosing of breast cancer.” The patent covers methods that can be used for diagnosis and prognosis of breast cancer. Also described are methods that can be used to screen candidate bioactive agents for the ability to modulate breast cancer. Additionally, methods and molecular targets (genes and their products) for therapeutic intervention in breast cancer are described.

Nanosphere of Northbrook, Ill., received US Patent No. 6,750,016, “Nanoparticles having oligonucleotides attached thereto and uses therefore.” The patent is one in a series granted to the company for its methods of detecting nucleic acids. The methods comprise contacting the nucleic acid with one or more types of particles with oligonucleotides attached. The technology covers oligos attached to nanoparticles with sequences complementary to portions of the sequence of the targeted nucleic acid. A detectable change (preferably a color change) is brought about as a result of the hybridization of the oligo on the nanoparticles.


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