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IP Update: May 20, 2011

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Recent Patents in Bioinformatics, April — May 2011

US Patent 7,945,392. Methods and systems for drug screening and computational modeling based on biologically realistic neurons. Inventors: Peter Siekmeier, Steven Matthysse. Assignee: McLean Hospital Corporation.

The patent describes a method for screening a test drug for potential efficacy in treating schizophrenia. The abstract states that the approach includes "a computer model" that represents "a volume of disease-afflicted neural tissue comprising biologically realistic neurons" that are exposed to the potential drug for a period of time. The outcome of the exposure indicates whether the drug is a likely candidate for treating the disease.


US Patent 7,945,389. Information processing system using nucleotide sequence-related information. Inventors: Takamasa Kato, Takeo Morimoto. Assignee: Hitachi.

Describes a method for processing information on nucleotide sequences. The system will provide positional information on nucleotide sequences as well as associated semantic information.


US Patent 7,941,278. MicroRNA motifs. Inventors: Yu-Ching Chang, Yu-Yu Lin, Shiu-Chieh Lan, Cheng-Tao Wu, Chung-Cheng Liu. Assignee: Industrial Technology Research Institute.

The patent describes the development of computational methods for predicting microRNA motifs for a target gene or a set of target genes.


The Scan

More Boosters for US

Following US Food and Drug Administration authorization, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has endorsed booster doses of the Moderna and Johnson & Johnson SARS-CoV-2 vaccines, the Washington Post writes.

From a Pig

A genetically modified pig kidney was transplanted into a human without triggering an immune response, Reuters reports.

For Privacy's Sake

Wired reports that more US states are passing genetic privacy laws.

Science Paper on How Poaching Drove Evolution in African Elephants

In Science this week: poaching has led to the rapid evolution of tuskless African elephants.