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Signal Pharma and Amersham Biosciences Among Recent US Patent Winners

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Signal Pharmaceuticals has been awarded US Patent No. 6,913,925, "Human mesencephalon cell lines and methods of use therefore."

Inventors listed on the patent are Dinah Sah and Heather Raymon.

According to its abstract, the patent protects conditionally immortalized human mesencephalon cell lines. Such cell lines, which may be clonal, may be used to generate neurons, including dopaminergic neurons … and may be used for the development of therapeutic agents to prevent and treat a variety of neurological diseases such as Parkinson's disease. The cell lines and/or differentiated cells may also be used in assays and for the general study of mesencephalon cell development and differentiation, the abstract states.


Amersham Biosciences [GE Healthcare] has been awarded US Patent No. 6,913,935, "Multiple assay method."

Nicholas Thomas is the lone inventor listed on the patent.

According to its abstract, the patent protects a method for the assay of N samples each containing a compound to be tested, in which N reaction vessels are provided, each containing a population of carrier beads and other reagents for performing the assay, where N is at least 2, e.g. 80-4000. Each population of carrier beads is distinguishable from every other population, the abstract states, and after adding the samples to the reaction vessels and performing the assays, the contents of all the reaction vessels are mixed and subjected to analysis by flow cytometry. By means of flow cytometry, each carrier bead is rapidly analyzed to identify its population and also to determine the presence or concentration or biological activity of the compound to be tested, the abstract states.


Universidad de Salmanca has been awarded US Patent No. 6,913,901, "Procedure for controlling the enumeration of the absolute count of cells or other particles present in a sample."

Jose Alberto Orfao is the sole inventor listed on the patent.

According to its abstract, the patent protects a procedure for controlling the enumeration of the absolute count of cells (or other particles) present in a sample. The procedure consists of the following: to prepare, in known quantities and proportions, a mixture or stock solution of two or more populations of reference particles of differing characteristics; to add a known quantity of this mixture of reference particles to a known volume of the sample which contains the cells (or other particles) to be counted; to measure, in a flow cytometer, the sample containing both the cells (or other particles), the events of which are to be counted, and the mixture of different populations of reference particles; to calculate the absolute number of cells (or other particles) present in the sample to be counted; and, to check that the proportion between the different reference particles present in the sample measured concurs with the proportion that exists between them in the initial mixture or stock solution which contained the different populations of reference particles prior to adding it to the sample, the abstract states.

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