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IP Roundup: Jun 29, 2010

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Affymetrix has received US Patent No. 7,745,091, "Miniaturized microparticles." The patent describes an encoded microparticle, as well as a set of encoded microparticles with distinguishable codes, where the codes comply with a predetermined coding scheme. According to the patent, the encoded microparticles are no longer than 50 microns, and contain segments that are arranged to form a spatial code that is detectable through the outer surface using reflected light, transmitted light, emitted light, magnetic field, visible light, ultraviolet light, and fluorescence imaging.


Affymetrix has also received US Patent No. 7,745,092, "Multiple step printing methods for microbarcodes." The patent describes a method of forming encoded microparticles with a lithography process as well a method to define codes for identifying the particles. The method includes providing a planar substrate on which the microparticles are to be formed; providing a pattern; exposing the substrate to the pattern; and printing the encoding pattern on the microparticles.


Roche NimbleGen has received US Patent No. 7,745,118, "Comparative genomic resequencing." The patent provides a method of resequencing DNA using microarrays to map and identify SNPs, deletions, and amplification events present in the genome of an organism. The method is performed by hybridizing a reference and a test genome to two separate arrays with each array exhibiting a specific intensity pattern, the patent states. The intensity differences between the reference and the test genome arrays are used to produce a mutation map. The mapped differences are then resequenced on a set of resequencing arrays to identify specific genetic mutations.


Plexera of Oriental, NC, has received US Patent No. 7,745,143, "Plasmon resonance biosensor and method." The patent claims a method of analyzing a sample by directing a beam of light to a spot on the surface of a microarray treated with the sample using a digital micromirror device, and observing the surface plasmon resonance spectral shift due to a chemical binding event. The digital micromirror device can be, for example, that used in digital light processing and can selectively place a pixel of light onto a microarray so that each spot can be observed at millisecond intervals and the whole microarray can be sequentially scanned over a relatively short period. The SPR spectral shift for each spot can be measured as a function of time, producing SPR detection of molecular binding in an array format.


Stanford University has received US Patent No. 7,745,614, "Universal linker compositions for the release or transfer of chemical agents from a polynucleotide." The patent claims a universal linker structure, in which a functional group and activating leaving group are placed on a tether, allowing the placement of an electrophile at the end of any nucleic acid sequence. The electrophile on the tether can react with a second nucleic acid carrying a nucleophile when the two nucleic acids are hybridized near one another, resulting in release of the leaving group, and creation of a functional change, according to the patent. The linker can be designed to destabilize the ligation product without slowing the rate of reaction. This lowers product inhibition, and the target DNA or RNA can become a catalyst for isothermally generating multiple signals for detection, the patent states.


Roche has received US Patent No. 7,747,389, "Scoring system for the prediction of cancer recurrence." The patent concerns the selection of genes and proteins, and generation of formulae with the selected genes and proteins for the prediction of cancer recurrence by measuring the expression of genes and proteins of human tumor tissues, and comparing their patterns with those of the gene and protein expression of human primary tumors from patients who have cancer recurrence and those who do not have cancer recurrence. The patent also describes a kit for performing the method that can include microarrays, protein arrays, northern blotting, in situ hybridization, RNase protection assays, western blotting, ELISA assays, or RT-PCR.


Pathwork Diagnostics of Redwoods City, Calif., has received US Patent No. 7,747,547, "Systems and methods for diagnosing a biological specimen using probabilities." The patent claims systems and methods for determining a phenotypic characterization of a test biological specimen from among a number of phenotypic characterizations. For each respective pair of phenotypic characterizations, a pairwise probability that the test biological specimen has phenotypic characterization is computed, forming several pairwise probabilities. According to the patent, the pairwise probabilities are useful for determining not only the most probable phenotypic characterization for the test biological specimen, but also whether the most probable phenotypic characterization is the clear choice over other phenotypic characterization pairs.

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