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BioInform s Patent Roundup: Recent Patents in Bioinformatics: Nov 29, 2004


US Patent 6,816,790. Method and apparatus for determining gene expression levels. Inventors: Geoffrey Grinstein, Glenn Allen Held, Yuhai Tu. Assignee: International Business Machines.

Covers techniques for analyzing gene expression levels. In one aspect, the invention provides a method for determining a concentration level of a target nucleic acid that determines a measure of affinity value of the target oligonucleotide with a probe oligonucleotide, along with a hybridization intensity value for the target oligonucleotide and the probe oligonucleotide at a probe spot. The measure of affinity value and the hybridization intensity value are used to determine the concentration level of the target nucleic acid.

US Patent 6,816,789. Method and system for analyzing chromatograms. Inventor: Jean-Louis Excoffier. Assignee: Varian.

Protects a system for chromatogram analysis based on a method for reducing each chromatogram to a data set that can be compared to another data set, producing a comparison result that indicates the similarity or dissimilarity of the two chromatograms. The invention provides a system and method that can be used to identify DNA sequence variations through chromatogram analysis as well as a user interface to display results of chromatogram analysis and illustrate which samples are dissimilar or similar to reference chromatograms.

US Patent 6,813,615. Method and system for interpreting and validating experimental data with automated reasoning. Inventors: Ricardo Colasanti, Mark Collins, John Shaw. Assignee: Cellomics.

Protects a system for interpreting experimental data in which domain-specific knowledge is acquired from one or more pharmaceutical information sources; a semantic representation of the domain-specific knowledge is created meeting a desired set of criteria; and then pharmaceutical data from a knowledge database is classified with the semantic representation, allowing construction of a set of reasons for any classified pharmaceutical data. According to the inventors, the set of reasons may help interpret the classified pharmaceutical data to remove errors, and may improve identification, selection, validation, and screening of new real or virtual pharmaceutical compounds.


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The Scan

Octopus Brain Complexity Linked to MicroRNA Expansions

Investigators saw microRNA gene expansions coinciding with complex brains when they analyzed certain cephalopod transcriptomes, as they report in Science Advances.

Study Tracks Outcomes in Children Born to Zika Virus-Infected Mothers

By following pregnancy outcomes for women with RT-PCR-confirmed Zika virus infections, researchers saw in Lancet Regional Health congenital abnormalities in roughly one-third of live-born children.

Team Presents Benchmark Study of RNA Classification Tools

With more than 135 transcriptomic datasets, researchers tested two dozen coding and non-coding RNA classification tools, establishing a set of potentially misclassified transcripts, as they report in Nucleic Acids Research.

Breast Cancer Risk Related to Pathogenic BRCA1 Mutation May Be Modified by Repeats

Several variable number tandem repeats appear to impact breast cancer risk and age at diagnosis in almost 350 individuals carrying a risky Ashkenazi Jewish BRCA1 founder mutation.