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IP Roundup, Jun 21, 2011


California Institute of Technology of Pasadena, Calif., has received US Patent No. 7,964,139, "Microfluidic rotary flow reactor matrix." The patent describes a microfluidic device that contains a matrix of rotary flow reactors. The inventors claim that the chip reduces labor relative to conventional fluid handling techniques by using an order of magnitude fewer pipetting steps, and reduces cost by consuming two to three orders of magnitude less reagent per reaction. A PCR format has immediate applications in medical diagnosis and gene testing. Beyond PCR, the microfluidic matrix chip provides a platform for biological and chemical assays requiring "parsimonious use of precious reagents and highly automated processing," they claim.

Canon of Tokyo has received US Patent No. 7,964,344, "Stable hybrid." A method for designing a nucleic acid probe set is claimed, where the set consists of nucleic acids immobilized on a substrate for hybridizing with target sequences in target strands of sample nucleic acids. The method consists of confirming that more than 70 percent of the probes on the substrate satisfy several conditions when the probes hybridize to the sample nucleic acids. Among these conditions, the probe nucleic acid should be shorter than the target strand; and the sample nucleic acid and a complementary probe sequence should be present in the hybrid.

Krassen Dimitrov of Indooroopilly, Australia, has received US Patent No. 7,964,347, "Labels for electronic detection of individual molecules and methods for their detection." The patent provides labels for electronic detection of individual molecules. The labels consist of elements with different electrical properties that affect the electric current flowing through a nanoelectrode. The labels are of polymeric or filamentous structure where the elements are arranged linearly along their length. According to the patent, the arrangement of the elements is predetermined and combinatorial, so that a high diversity of labels can be generated in a manner that resembles barcoding on a nanoscale level. Methods for the synthesis of such barcode labels and for the binding of the barcode labels to individual molecules, their movement past a nanoelectrode, and their detection are also provided.

Hitachi of Tokyo has received US Patent No. 7,964,388, "Chemical reaction device, chemical reaction system, and chemical reaction method." A device is provided for a chemical reaction between molecules immobilized on a solid phase and molecules in a solution. A chemical analysis device is also provided to capture molecules in the solution and subsequently measure the captured molecules. Both the chemical reaction and chemical analysis devices use a microfluidic device channel as a reaction vessel. According to the patent, the channel is provided with a particular molecule immobilized on an interior surface of the channel with an obstacle positioned against the flow. In a typical reaction vessel having an enzyme immobilized in the capillary's interior surface and glass beads as obstacles, a reaction solution can move either in one direction or back and forth to react with the immobilized enzyme.

Fujifilm of Tokyo has received US Patent No. 7,964,414, "Biosensor with suppressed non-specific adsorption." The patent claims a biosensor, where non-specific adsorption on a surface that does not retain a physiologically active substance is suppressed. The biosensor includes a substrate containing two types of surfaces on a single plane, where one of the surfaces does not retain a physiologically active substance, and where two types of hydrophilic compounds with different molecular weights are bound to the surface that does not retain a physiologically active substance.

Receptors of Chaska, Minn., has received US Patent No. 7,964,535, "Arrays and artificial receptors." The patent described artificial receptors and microarrays of artificial receptors or candidate artificial receptors. The described arrays include the building blocks, combinations of building blocks, arrays of building blocks, and receptors constructed of these building blocks together with a support.

Wayne State University of Detroit, Mich., has received US Patent No. 7,964,536, "Neoepitope detection of disease using protein arrays." The patent claims a method of determining the efficacy of a pharmaceutical by administering the pharmaceutical to a sample containing markers for a disease, detecting the amount of at least one marker of the disease in the sample, and analyzing the amount of the marker in the sample, where the amount of marker correlates to pharmaceutical efficacy or disease stage. Software for analyzing the arrays is also claimed.

Affymetrix of Santa Clara, Calif., has received US Patent No. 7,964,654, "Photoacid generators for the synthesis of oligo-DNA in a polymer matrix." A process for fabricating an array of polymers is claimed. It includes providing a solid substrate containing a reactive group protected by an acid labile protective group; coating the substrate with a film that consists of a photoacid generator represented by specified formula; c) activating the photoacid generator in selected regions of the substrate by selective application of light with a predetermined wavelength to provide an acid; d) exposing the reactive group containing the protective group to the acid so that the protective group is removed to provide an exposed reactive group; e) reacting the exposed reactive group with a monomer, where the monomer is coupled to the exposed reactive group; and f) repeating the steps of coating, activating, exposing, and reacting to produce the array of polymers.

Qimoda of Munich, Germany, has received US Patent No. 7,965,375, "Lithography mask, rewritable mask, process for manufacturing a mask, device for processing a substrate, lithographic system and a semiconductor device." The patent claims a lithography mask or rewritable mask that consists of material with reversible changeable optical properties. Processes for manufacturing the mask, devices for processing a substrate, lithographic systems, and semiconductor devices are also claimed.

Microsoft of Redmond, Wash., has received US Patent No. 7,966,130, "Systems and methods for determining a weighted mean intensity." The patent claims a method for fluorophore bias removal in microarray experiments, where the fluorophores used in array experiment pairs are reversed. A method for calculating the individual errors associated with each measurement made in nominally repeated microarray experiments is also claimed. This error measurement is optionally coupled with rank-based methods in order to determine a probability that a cellular constituent is up- or down-regulated in response to a perturbation. Finally, a method for determining the confidence in the weighted average of the expression level of a cellular constituent in nominally repeated microarray experiments is provided.