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GPC Biotech, Science Applications, Merck, OSI, Stanford, Quest, Get Patents

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GPC Biotech has been awarded US Patent No. 6,747,128, “Components of ubiquitin ligase complexes, and uses related thereto.”

According to the patent’s abstract, the invention relates to the isolation of a new class of ubiquitin ligases involved in protein degradation in vertebrate organisms, such as protein degradation of cell cycle regulatory proteins.

Accordingly, the abstract states, the invention provides nucleic acids and the proteins encoded by said nucleic acids, which play a role in the ubiquitinylation and subsequent degradation of substrate proteins and in regulating cell proliferation, cell differentiation, and cell survival. The invention also provides methods for assays for identifying compounds that modulate protein degradation, cell proliferation, differentiation and/or cell survival; and diagnostic and prognostic assays for determining whether a subject is at risk of developing a disorder associated with aberrant protein degradation, cell proliferation, cell differentiation, and/or survival.


Science Applications International Corporation and Merck have been awarded US Patent No. 6,746,864, “Automated system for simultaneously performing a plurality of signal-based assays.”

According to the patent’s abstract, the invention relates to an automated detection system, which includes a robotic fluid handling system for performing assays on the plurality of test samples; a detection system for imaging the assays as they are performed; and a computer control, data acquisition, and data analysis system for controlling the operation of the detection system and for collecting and analyzing imaging data.

In addition, the abstract states, the automated detection system comprises a pipettor for simultaneously distributing a predetermined amount of a reagent to each of the plurality of samples containing a fluorescent dye or other indicator moiety; an excitation source for simultaneously exciting a fluorescent reaction of the fluorescent dye indicating the intensity of reaction between a sample and the reagent in each of the sample wells; a detector for detecting signal produced by the reaction in each of the sample wells over a period of time comprising a single CCD scanning device for optically scanning the plurality of samples simultaneously; and a computerized controller for simultaneously coordinating the pipettor, the excitation source, and the detector.


OSI Pharmaceuticals has been awarded US Patent No. 6,746,852, “AGS proteins and nucleic acid molecules and uses thereof.”

According the patent’s abstract, the invention includes isolated AGS nucleic acid molecules, as well as recombinant expression vectors containing a nucleic acid molecule. These expression vectors include AGS specific promoters. The invention also includes host cells into which the expression vectors have been introduced, and “a process of transcribing or expressing a heterologous sequence by culturing the host cells under appropriate conditions,” the abstract states.


The Board of Trustees of Stanford University has been awarded US Patent No. 6,747,135, “Fluorescent dye binding peptides.”

According to the patent’s abstract, the invention is directed to novel polypeptides, termed fluorettes, that bind with high avidity to fluorophore dyes. The peptides find use in a variety of methods and approaches involving fluorophore dyes.


Quest Diagnostics Investments has been awarded US Patent No. 6,747,139, “Nucleic acid encoding human thyrotropin receptor.”

According to the patent’s abstract, nucleic acids encoding human thyrotropin receptor and related methods are disclosed. The nucleic acids may have nucleotides deleted and/or replaced to modify the amino acid sequence of human thyrotropin receptor.

The Scan

Renewed Gain-of-Function Worries

The New York Times writes that the pandemic is renewing concerns about gain-of-function research.

Who's Getting the Patents?

A trio of researchers has analyzed gender trends in biomedical patents issued between 1976 and 2010 in the US, New Scientist reports.

Other Uses

CBS Sunday Morning looks at how mRNA vaccine technology could be applied beyond SARS-CoV-2.

PLOS Papers Present Analysis of Cervicovaginal Microbiome, Glycosylation in Model Archaea, More

In PLOS this week: functional potential of the cervicovaginal microbiome, glycosylation patterns in model archaea, and more.