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Silence Therapeutics has scored a victory in its efforts to defend its intellectual property estate, announcing this week that the US Patent and Trademark Office has upheld the validity of four patents related to the design of RNAi molecules.

According to the amended complaint, University of Utah's Brenda Bass had “so well-defined” the concept at issue that it "could have been reduced to practice by someone with ordinary skill in the art without further research.”

The funding is worth $250,000 per year for two years and will be matched dollar for dollar by RXi. The award is still subject to a formal agreement between RXi and UMMS.

Life Tech also disclosed that the laboratory of Victor Ambros at the University of Massachusetts Medical School and affiliated RNAi Therapeutics Institute is an early-access customer of the product.

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Bloomberg reports that vaccine developers won't have to conduct large trials of updated vaccines or vaccine boosters aimed at new viral variants.

The SARS-CoV-2 variant uncovered in California may be more transmissible and partially evade vaccine-induced antibody response, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Francis deSouza, the CEO of Illumina, calls for a global SARS-CoV-2 genomics surveillance network, according to the Financial Times.

In PNAS this week: immunotherapy for hard-to-treat breast cancers, effects of oncogenic histone H3K36M mutations, and more.