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Surmodics, Ramot University, Agilent Technologies, Bioarray Solutions, Applera, Nanogen, Affymetrix

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Surmodics of Eden Prairie, Minn., received US Patent No. 6,465,178, “Target molecule attachment to surfaces.” The patent covers a method for reagent composition and covalent attachment of target molecules, such as nucleic acids, onto the surface of a substrate. The reagent composition includes groups capable of covalently binding to the target molecule. Optionally, the composition can contain photoreactive groups for use in attaching the target molecule to the surface. The reagent composition can be used to provide activated slides for use in preparing microarrays of nucleic acids.

Ramot University Authority for Applied Research and Industrial Development of Tel Aviv, received US Patent 6,465,241, “Method, chip, device and system for effecting and monitoring nucleic acid accumulation.” The patent covers a chip analyzing nucleic acid accumulation with an optical waveguide having a radiation input port and a radiation output port, the optical waveguide being formed with at least one optical microcavity along its optical path, at least one oligonucleotide being immobilized to the optical waveguide in the microcavity, such that when at least one oligonucleotide is contacted with reagents under conditions allowing a nucleic acid accumulation reaction to take place, accumulated nucleic acid is detectable by providing radiation at the radiation input port of the optical waveguide and monitoring radiation signal modulation at the radiation output port of the optical waveguide.

Agilent Technologies of Palo Alto, Calif., received US Patent No. 6,465,183, “Multidentate arrays,” covering a method of evaluating for the presence of a target polynucleotide in a sample, using an addressable array of multiple polynucleotide probes linked to a substrate. The sample is exposed to the array and a set of polynucleotide target probes, such that a target polynucleotide, which may be present, will bind to a predetermined feature of the array through multiple target probes of the set by forming at respective target regions on a target molecule, simultaneous hybrids with anti-target regions of the multiple target probes. The method provides for high affinity of probes to a target by using an array feature in which two or more probes are present, which together bind with respective regions of a target at two or more regions (that is, the feature exhibits multidentate binding).

Bioarray Solutions of Piscataway, N.J., received US Patent No. 6,468,811, “Light-controlled electrokinetic assembly of particles near surfaces.” The patent covers an integrated system for the implementation of biochemical analysis in a planar, miniaturized format on the surface of a conductive and/or photoconductive substrate like a silicon wafer or similar substrate, and the real-time, interactive spatial manipulation of colloidal particles (beads) and molecules at an interface between a light sensitive electrode and an electrolyte solution. It has applications in pharmaceutical and agricultural drug discovery and in in-vitro or genomic diagnostics.

Applera of Norwalk, Conn., received US Patent 6,468,774, “Isolated human enzyme proteins, nucleic acid molecules encoding human enzyme proteins, and uses thereof.” The patent covers a method for providing amino acid sequences of glutathione peroxidase polypeptides that are encoded by genes within the human genome. It also covers a system for developing nucleic acid detection kits, such as arrays or microarrays of nucleic acid molecules, that are based on the sequence information.

Nanogen of San Diego received US Patent 6,468,742, “Methods for determination of single nucleic acid polymorphisms using bioelectronic microchip.” The patent covers a method for the analysis and determination of SNPs in a genetic target. SNPs in a target nucleic acid are determined using a single capture site on an electronically addressable microchip (e.g, an APEX type microchip). Both wild type and mutant alleles are distinguished, if present in a sample, at a single capture site by detecting the presence of hybridized allele-specific probes labeled with fluorophores sensitive to excitation at various wave lengths. The method offers several advantages over passive-based hybridization assays. An example: Electronic addressing under low salt conditions in the presence of stabilizer oligomer inhibits rehybridization of amplicon strands in situations where amplification of target nucleic acid is carried out and obviates the need for asymmetric amplification.

Affymetrix of Santa Clara, Calif., received US Patent 6,468,740, “Cyclic and substituted immobilized molecular synthesis.” The patent is for methods for the synthesis, use, and applications of diverse molecular sequences on a substrate. The system provides for the synthesis of an array of polymers in which individual monomers in a lead polymer are substituted with monomers from basis sets of monomers. The method requires a limited number of masks and a limited number of processing steps.

The Scan

For Better Odds

Bloomberg reports that a child has been born following polygenic risk score screening as an embryo.

Booster Decision Expected

The New York Times reports the US Food and Drug Administration is expected to authorize a booster dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech SARS-CoV-2 vaccine this week for individuals over 65 or at high risk.

Snipping HIV Out

The Philadelphia Inquirer reports Temple University researchers are to test a gene-editing approach for treating HIV.

PLOS Papers on Cancer Risk Scores, Typhoid Fever in Colombia, Streptococcus Protection

In PLOS this week: application of cancer polygenic risk scores across ancestries, genetic diversity of typhoid fever-causing Salmonella, and more.