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IP Update: Illumina; Agilent; Synergenz Bioscience; Genetag; Affymetrix; Quest Diagnostics; and More

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Ohio State University of Columbus, Ohio, has received US Patent No. 8,075,854, "Microfluidic chips for rapid multiplex ELISA. "The patent claims a microfluidic chip that consists of a substrate and a channel or multiple channels in the substrate. Each channel includes a tortuous path section or multiple tortuous path sections, according to the patent. A receptor for the detection of an analyte can be immobilized in a tortuous path section, for example by adsorption. Different receptors can be immobilized in different tortuous path sections of each channel or in different channels for simultaneous detection of multiple analytes. The chip is especially useful for running immunoassays, particularly enzyme-linked immunosorbant assays.


Illumina of San Diego has received US Patent No. 8,076,063, "Multiplexed methylation detection methods." A method for multiplex detection of methylation in a population of double-stranded target nucleic acids is claimed. It includes: a) providing a population of double-stranded target nucleic acids labeled with a purification tag, where the target nucleic acids make up potentially methylated target sequences; b) cleaving the population of target nucleic acids with an enzyme, where the enzyme selectively cleaves at unmethylated target sequences in the population of target nucleic acids and does not cleave at methylated target sequences in said population of target nucleic acids, forming a population of cleaved target nucleic acids labeled with a purification tag and a population of non-cleaved target nucleic acids labeled with a purification tag; c) immobilizing the population of non-cleaved target nucleic acids by the purification tag, forming immobilized non-cleaved target nucleic acids; and d) detecting the presence of immobilized non-cleaved target nucleic acids, where different hybridization complexes between immobilized non-cleaved target nucleic acids and different target probes indicates the presence of methylation in the population of double-stranded target nucleic acids.


Agilent Technologies of Santa Clara, Calif., has received US Patent No. 8,076,064, "Method of treatment of RNA sample." The method includes contacting the sample of RNA with an analogous DNA set to provide a DNA/RNA duplex, where the analogous DNA set consists of at least one DNA oligonucleotide made up of at least 10 contiguous nucleotides of a small RNA in the sample, except that uracils in the sequence of the small RNA are substituted with thymines in the DNA oligonucleotide; contacting the DNA/RNA duplex with an enzyme having an RNase H activity to provide a digested RNA sample; and analyzing the digested RNA sample to detect the RNA.


Agilent Technologies has also received US Patent No. 8,077,951, "Method and system for dynamic, automated detection of outlying feature and feature background regions during processing of data scanned from a chemical array." The patent provides a signal intensity variance model to dynamically adjust to the signals read from the scanned image of the array. Calculated variance from measured values of the signal intensities and pixel distributions within a feature or feature background is then compared to a maximum allowable variance calculated for the feature or feature background based on the dynamically adjusting signal intensity variance model. When the calculated variance is less than or equal to the maximum allowable variance, the feature or feature background is considered to have acceptable signal-intensity uniformity. Otherwise, the feature or feature background is flagged as an outlier feature or outlier feature background.


Synergenz Bioscience of Hong Kong has received US Patent No. 8,076,065, "Methods and compositions for assessment of pulmonary function and disorders." A method of determining a human subject's increased risk of developing lung cancer when exposed to at least fifteen pack-years of tobacco smoking is claimed. It includes obtaining a sample from a subject and detecting a genotype of CC at position -133 in the promoter of the gene encoding interleukin-18 and a genotype of AT or TT at position -251 in the gene encoding interleukin-8 (IL-8). The presence of the genotype indicates an increased risk for developing lung cancer when exposed to at least fifteen pack-years of tobacco smoking. Nucleotide probes and primers, kits, and microarrays suitable for such assessment are also provided.


Genetag Technology of Atlanta, Ga., has received US Patent No. 8,076,067, "Probe-antiprobe compositions and methods for DNA or RNA detection." The patent provides methods for detecting unlabeled nucleic acid targets using labeled polynucleotide probes and partially complementary antiprobes. The interaction of probes, antiprobes, and targets results in signaling changes that indicate target frequency. This detection mechanism is called a DNA detection switch, and it enables end-point detection, microarray detection, and real-time PCR detection of a variety of nucleic acid targets including microbial species and subspecies, drug-resistant mutants, and pathogenic strains, according to the patent.


Affymetrix of Santa Clara, Calif., has received US Patent No. 8,076,072, "Nucleic acid labeling compounds." The patent claims nucleic acid labeling compounds containing a detectable moiety. The compounds can be incorporated into nucleic acids to provide detectable compositions that are useful for genetic analysis technologies, according to the patent. These compounds and the detectable compositions can aid, for example, in the monitoring of gene expression and the detection and screening of mutations and polymorphisms.


Affymetrix has also received US Patent No. 8,076,083, "Screening methods involving the detection of short-lived proteins. According to the patent, a library of cells is collected, where the cells express a fusion protein consisting a reporter protein and a protein encoded by a sequence from a cDNA library derived from a sample of cells. The cells are then contacted with agents that may affect protein degradation rates. Each agent may create different reporter signal intensities, where the difference indicates that the selected cells express shorter lived fusion proteins than the fusion proteins expressed by the other cells in the library.


Quest Diagnostics of Wilmington, Del., has received US Patent No. 8,076,074, "Balanced translocation in comparative hybridization." A method of detecting the presence or absence of chromosomal abnormalities and a balanced translocation in a test sample of genomic nucleic acid is claimed. It includes hybridizing to a genomic nucleic acid array a test sample of genomic nucleic acid and a reference genomic nucleic acid; and hybridizing at least one probe for detecting a balanced translocation to the array, where at least one of the probes has a sequence that spans a translocation break point. The subsequent detection of differential binding to test sample of genomic nucleic acid on the array versus binding to the reference nucleic acid indicates the presence of a chromosomal abnormality, according to the patent. The detection of differential binding of at least one probe for detecting a balanced translocation to the test sample compared to the reference genomic nucleic acid indicates the presence of a balanced translocation.


Life Bioscience of Albuquerque, NM, has received US Patent No. 8,076,162, "Method of providing particles having biological-binding areas for biological applications." The patent describes a microsphere composition and methods of making binding assays. It also includes a microsphere for binding biological molecules without pretreatment. The claimed microsphere includes a spherical glass substrate having one or more metal nanoparticle regions that are exposed from within the glass, where the microsphere is capable of binding biological molecules without pretreatment.


Proteome Sciences of Cobham, UK, has received US Patent No. 8,076,461, "Methods and compositions for determining the purity of and purifying chemically synthesized nucleic acids." An antibody microarray is described that consists of antibodies immobilized on a substrate. Each antibody will bind to a synthetic oligomer that has an organic protecting group covalently bound to it, but will not bind to synthetic oligomers when the organic protecting group is not covalently bound to it. According to the inventors, the antibody microarrays are useful in immunoassays, such as for the qualitative and quantitative detection of protecting groups used in organic synthetic processes, with application to oligonucleotides or peptides in research, therapeutics, diagnostics, and biomedical science.

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