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Diversa, Beckman Coulter, and Xcyte Among Recent US Patent Winners

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Diversa has been awarded US Patent No. 6,866,824, “Capillary array-based sample screening.”

Inventors listed on the patent are William Lafferty, Jay Short, and Martin Keller.

According to its abstract, the patent protects methods of screening and identifying bioactivities and bioactive molecules of interest using a capillary array system. More specifically, the patent protects methods of using optical detection and capillary array-based techniques for screening libraries and recovering bioactive molecules having a desired activity or a nucleic acid sequence encoding such bioactive molecules.


Beckman Coulter has been awarded US Patent No. 6,867,005, “Method and apparatus for increasing the dynamic range and accuracy of binding assays.”

Inventors listed on the patent are Daniel Keys and Parameswara Reddy.

According to its abstract, the patent protects methods for increasing the dynamic range and accuracy of assays in which the presence, absence, activity, or concentration of a target analyte is assayed by the emission or quenching of a light signal; or by a change (i.e., an evolution or loss) of a light signal in two or more time intervals. In preferred embodiments, multiple digitized images are captured at varying times, and the images analyzed to identify captured images within the dynamic range of the assay. The invention further relates to apparatuses capable of implementing such methods, the abstract states.


New England Medical Center Hopsitals has been awarded US Patent No. 6,867,008, “Method for assaying compounds affecting cell division using estrogen receptor beta and mitosis arrest deficient 2 (MAD2).”

Michael Mendelsohn is the sole inventor listed on the patent.

According to its abstract, the patent protects a method for assaying compounds that affect cell division by determining the interaction between estrogen receptor ER beta and MAD2, a cell cycle checkpoint protein.


The University of Missouri has been awarded US Patent No. 6,867,034, “Methods of screening novel agents for use in cancer therapy and prevention.”

Inventors listed on the patent are Hannah Alexander and Stephen Alexander.

According to its abstract, the patent protects methods of screening agents for cancer therapeutic and prophylactic activity. In particular embodiments, cells of the cellular slime mold Dictyostelium discoideum are contacted with candidate agents and the expression of genes in the Nucleotide Excision Repair (NER) and Base Excision Repair (BER) pathways are examined. Such genes include the helicases repB and repD, and the apurinic-apyrmidinic endonuclease APE.


The University of British Columbia has been awarded US Patent No. 6,867,035, “Cell libraries indexed to nucleic acid microarrays.”

Christopher Ong is the sole inventor listed on the patent.

According to its abstract, the patent protects a method for selecting a clone of an ES cell containing a mutation in a gene that is expressed in a test cell comprising: (a) providing cDNA obtained by reverse transcription of mRNA of the test cell; (b) providing a collection of cultured ES cells organized into individual clones, wherein each clone is of an ES cell having a mutation in an exon in its genome, the mutation being in a different exon in cells of different clones; (c) providing an array of different single-stranded polynucleotides, the polynucleotides being fragments of exons containing mutations in (b); (d) exposing the cDNA to the array under conditions permitting hybridization of polynucleotides in the array to nucleic acids; (e) detecting hybridization of cDNA to a polynucleotide on the array; and, (f) selecting a clone in the collection from which a hybridizing polynucleotide detected at (c) is an exon fragment. The patent also protects a system for testing expression of a gene in a test cell, as well as a preferred exon trap vector for mutating ES cells, the abstract states.


Xcyte Therapeutics has been awarded US Patent No. 6,867,041, “Simultaneous stimulation and concentration of cells.”

Inventors listed on the patent are Ronald Benson, Che Law, Mark Bonyhadi, Narinder Saund, Stewart Craig, Alan Hardwick, Dale Kalamasz, and David McMillen.

According to its abstract, the patent protects methods for stimulating cells, and more particularly, a novel method to concentrate and/or stimulate cells that maximizes stimulation and/or proliferation of such cells. In the various embodiments, cells are stimulated and concentrated with a surface yielding enhanced proliferation, cell signal transduction, and/or cell surface moiety aggregation, the abstract states. Also provided are methods for producing phenotypically tailored cells, including T-cells for the use in diagnostics, drug discovery, and the treatment of a variety of indications, including cancer, viral infection, and immune-related disorders. The patent also protects compositions of cells having specific phenotypic properties produced by these processes, the abstract states.


The University of Minnesota has been awarded US Patent No. 6,867,851, “Scanning of biological samples.”

Inventors listed on the patent are Martin Blumenfield, Joseph Talghader, Mark Sanders, Scott Nelson, Kraig Anderson, and Steven Lewis.

According to its abstract, the patent protects an image-detection apparatus comprising a light source and a holding apparatus adapted to hold a substrate on which a biological sample may be mounted. Light from the light source impinges on the biological sample and causes light that is representative of the sample to be emitted from the sample, the abstract states. A light detector is positioned in the path of the emitted light and is scanned across the emitted light. The emitted light may be focused on the light detector with an optical assembly, and may be generated by chromophores on probes in the biological sample, the abstract states.

 

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