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Sentigen Biosciences, Columbia University, Dartmouth College, Tosoh Corporation, Bio-Rad Laboratories, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Bowling Green State University


Sentigen Biosciences and Columbia University have been awarded US Patent No. 7,049,076, "Method for assaying protein-protein interaction."

Inventors listed on the patent are Kevin Lee, Richard Axel, Walter Strapps, and Gilad Barnea.

According to its abstract, the patent protects a method for determining if a test compound, or a mix of compounds, modulates the interaction between two proteins of interest. The determination is made possible via the use of two recombinant molecules, one of which contains the first protein, a cleavage site for a proteolytic molecule, and an activator of a gene. The second recombinant molecule includes the second protein and the proteolytic molecule. If the test compound binds to the first protein, a reaction is initiated whereby the activator is cleaved, and activates a reporter gene, the abstract states.

Dartmouth College has been awarded US Patent No. 7,049,086, "High-throughput screening assay for cholesterol inhibitors and inhibitors identified thereby."

Ta-Yuam Chang is the sole inventor listed on the patent.

According to its abstract, the patent protects a high-throughput screening assay to identify test agents as cholesterol inhibitors via mutant NCP1 mammalian cells. The patent also describes cholesterol-inhibiting agents identified in accordance with this assay, and methods for using such agents to inhibit cholesterol accumulation in cells.

Tosoh Corporation of Japan has been awarded US Patent No. 7,049,103, "Method of evaluating drug efficacy and toxicity."

Inventors listed on the patent are Takahiko Ishiguro, Kiyoshi Yasukawa, and Shigeo Tsuchiya.

According to its abstract, the patent protects a method of assaying the efficacy and/or toxicity of a test substance by expression of a specific gene in a cell or a microorganism. The method comprises treating the cell or microorganism with the test substance; amplifying an RNA having a sequence homologous or complementary to a specific sequence in a target RNA obtained as the result of transcription of the specific gene; and determining whether the target RNA is transcribed through the expression of the specific gene by detecting the RNA amplified in the previous amplification step.

Bio-Rad Laboratories has been awarded US Patent No. 7,049,151, "Assay system for simultaneous detection and measurement of multiple modified cellular proteins."

Inventors listed on the patent are Quan Nguyen and Yong Song.

According to its abstract, the patent protects a method and kit for simultaneous detection and/or determination of a plurality of modified proteins in a sample. The method comprises: (a) contacting the sample under mild protein-denaturation conditions with a plurality of first antibodies capable of binding to a specific target protein and immobilized on solid support material, with each antibody being differentiable from others by a differentiation parameter, so that they bind to respective target proteins present in the sample; (b) removing unbound materials from the locus of the first antibodies; (c) contacting the materials from step (b) with one or more second antibodies, each of which is specific to a class or subclass of modified proteins, so as to bind the second antibodies to modified proteins in the sample; and (d) detecting and/or determining a plurality of modified proteins in the sample. The kit comprises a plurality of primary antibodies immobilized on solid support material, one or more buffers for lysing and for washing cellular material samples to be assayed, an assay buffer for conducting the assay, the buffer containing a sulfate or sulfonate detergent, and one or more second antibodies specific to the modified proteins, the abstract states.

The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology has been awarded US Patent No. 7,049,400, "Modified fluorescent proteins for detecting protease activity."

Inventors listed on the patent are Donald Chang and Qian Luo.

According to its abstract, the patent protects fluorescent proteins modified such that they incorporate cleavage sites for proteases. Cleavage of a modified fluorescent protein at the cleavage site by the protease causes the alteration of at least one of the emission and excitation spectra of the modified fluorescent protein. In particular, the invention is concerned with using these modified fluorescent proteins as probes for detecting protease activity in living cells during apoptosis. The patent also describes nucleic acid sequences encoding same, recombinant DNA constructs expressing same, cells transformed or transfected with same, methods for detecting protease activity, and methods of detecting agents which affect protease activity, and kits for same.

Bowling Green State University has been awarded US Patent No. 7,050,620, "Method of assaying shape and structural features in cells."

Carol Heckman is the sole inventor listed on the patent.

According to its abstract, the patent protects a method for repetitively determining a profile of quantitative features for different cells in a sample by collecting and analyzing information on the mass distribution in cells or portions of cells and comparing the collected information to values from a relational database.

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