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Patent Watch: Feb 27, 2009

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The Massachusetts Institute of Technology has been awarded US Patent 7,494,821, "Fluorescein-based sensors for tracking nitric oxide in live cells."

The inventors listed on the patent are Stephen Lippard and Mi Hee Lim.

According to the abstract, the patent is partially focused on coordination complexes for detecting analytes, and methods of making and using these complexes.


Applera has been awarded US Patent 7,494,819, "Electrochemiluminescence electrode."

The inventors listed on the patent are Dar Bahatt, Timothy Liu, and Zbignew Bryning.

The patent describes a bipolar electrode useful for electrochemiluminescence assays and a method for using this electrode, as stated in its abstract.


Stanford University has been awarded US Patent 7,494,807, "Mammalian megakaryocyte progenitor cell."

The inventors listed on the patent are Thanyaphong Na Nakorn, Toshihiro Miyamoto, and Irving Weissman.

Its abstract states that the patent claims a substantially enriched mammalian hematopoietic cell population that is characterized as a progenitor cell committed to the megakaryocyte lineage. The patent also provides methods for the isolation and culture of these cells. The cell enrichment methods use reagents that specifically recognize CD9 and CD41, in conjunction with other markers expressed on lineage-committed progenitor cells. These cells give rise exclusively to megakaryocytes and platelets, as evidenced by their growth and differentiation in vitro and in vivo.

The Scan

Shape of Them All

According to BBC News, researchers have developed a protein structure database that includes much of the human proteome.

For Flu and More

The Wall Street Journal reports that several vaccine developers are working on mRNA-based vaccines for influenza.

To Boost Women

China's Ministry of Science and Technology aims to boost the number of female researchers through a new policy, reports the South China Morning Post.

Science Papers Describe Approach to Predict Chemotherapeutic Response, Role of Transcriptional Noise

In Science this week: neural network to predict chemotherapeutic response in cancer patients, and more.