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IP Roundup: Jun 1, 2010


Life Technologies has received US Patent No. 7,727,716, "Detection of immobilized nucleic acid." The patent claims methods for determining the presence of immobilized nucleic acid using unsymmetrical cyanine dyes that are derivatives of thiazole orange, a staining solution, and select, non-genotoxic fluorogenic compounds. The methods include immobilizing nucleic acid on a support; contacting the nucleic acid with an unsymmetrical cyanine dye compound; and then illuminating the nucleic acid with an appropriate wavelength to detect its presence. According to the inventors, the use of non-genotoxic compounds represents "an improvement" over other methods that use ethidium bromide, a "known mutagen requiring special handling and waste procedures."

Vector Tobacco of Morrisville, NC, has received US Patent No. 7,727,715, "Global gene expression analysis of human bronchial epithelial cells exposed to cigarette smoke, smoke condensates, or components thereof." The patent provides several methods to analyze genes that are modulated in normal human bronchial epithelial cells after exposure to cigarette smoke condensates or cigarette smoke. Methods described include a way to identify a gene that is modulated in response to tobacco exposure; methods to identify tobacco products that have a reduced potential to contribute to tobacco-related disease; methods to make tobacco products that have a reduced potential to contribute to a tobacco-related disease; methods to identify a subject's predilection to acquire a tobacco-related disease; the use of particular genes as biomarkers for tobacco-related disease; and patterns of gene expression or genetic signatures that are unique to particular tobacco products. Specifically, the methods include contacting isolated human cells of the mouth, tongue, oral cavity, or lungs with a tobacco product to modulate expression or modification of one or more genes or gene products, and identifying the gene that is modulated or the modified gene product (or the level or amount of gene expression or modification). According the patent, microarrays, gene chips, oligonucleotide arrays, RT-PCR, and other methods can be used in the analysis.

Ravgen of Columbia, Md., has received US Patent No. 7,727,720, "Methods for detection of genetic disorders." The patent provides a method for the detection of genetic disorders that includes: determining the sequence of alleles of a locus of interest; and quantitating a ratio for the alleles at the locus of interest, where the ratio indicates the presence or absence of a chromosomal abnormality. In one embodiment, the detection is by a method selected from the group consisting of electrophoresis, DNA sequencing, mass spectrometry, microarrays, GeneChip arrays, and blots.

Institut National de la Sante et de la Recherche Medicate, Institut Curie, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, and Commissariat a l'Energie Atomique, all of Paris, have received US Patent No. 7,728,128, "Dibenzo[c,h][1,5]naphthyridines and their use as DNA probes." The patent claims a formula for dibenzo[c,h][1,5]naphthyridine, as well as its use in DNA probes, a DNA labeling solution, an in vivo or in vitro method for detecting DNA in a test sample, and a kit for labeling DNA.

The Scan

Panel Recommends Pfizer-BioNTech Vaccine for Kids

CNN reports that the US Food and Drug Administration advisory panel has voted in favor of authorizing the Pfizer-BioNTech SARS-CoV-2 vaccine for children between 5 and 11 years old.

Sharing How to Make It

Merck had granted a royalty-free license for its COVID-19 treatment to the Medicines Patent Pool, according to the New York Times.

Bring it Back In

Bloomberg reports that a genetic analysis has tied a cluster of melioidosis cases in the US to a now-recalled aromatherapy spray.

Nucleic Acids Research Papers on SomaMutDB, VThunter, SCovid Databases

In Nucleic Acids Research this week: database of somatic mutations in normal tissue, viral receptor-related expression signatures, and more.