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IP Watch: GE Healthcare, Canon US Life Sciences, Mayo Clinic, Roche, Life Tech Win US Patents

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GE Healthcare has been awarded US Patent No. 8,507,662, "Methods and kits for reducing non-specific nucleic acid amplification."

John Nelson, Robert Duthie, Sonali Shah, and Clifford Smith are named as inventors.

Provides methods and kits for efficient amplification of nucleic acids. The methods comprise in vitro amplification of a nucleic acid template employing partially constrained primers having a terminal mismatch primer-dimer structure. The methods also comprise in vitro amplification of a nucleic acid template employing partially constrained primers having nucleotide analogues. The methods enhance efficiency of nucleic acid amplification reactions by reducing non-specific amplification.


Canon US Life Sciences has been awarded US Patent No. 8,507,257, "Combined thermal devices for thermal cycling."

Gregory Dale, Shulin Zeng, and Kenton Hasson are named as inventors.

Relates to systems and methods including a combination of thermal generating device technologies to achieve more efficiency and accuracy in PCR temperature cycling of nucleic samples undergoing amplification.


The Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research and Roche Molecular Systems have been awarded US Patent No. 8,507,201, "Detection of Bordetella."

Franklin Cockerill, Robin Patel, Lynne Sloan, Sabine Lohmann, and Ulrike Salat are named as inventors.

Provides methods, primers, probes and articles of manufacture containing such primers and probes to differentially detect Bordetella pertussis and/or Bordetella parapertussis in a biological sample.


Applied Biosystems (Life Technologies) has been awarded US Patent No. 8,507,198, "Compositions and methods of selective nucleic acid isolation."

Douglas Bost and Lawrence Greenfield are named as inventors.

Relates to methods and kits for isolating and/or identifying nucleic acids. In certain embodiments, methods of isolating DNA from a biological sample comprise: selectively binding DNA to a solid phase by contacting the biological sample with the solid phase under conditions which selectively bind DNA; separating the solid phase with the bound DNA from an unbound portion of the biological sample; and isolating the DNA from the solid phase, according to the patent summary.

The Scan

Interfering With Invasive Mussels

The Chicago Tribune reports that researchers are studying whether RNA interference- or CRISPR-based approaches can combat invasive freshwater mussels.

Participation Analysis

A new study finds that women tend to participate less at scientific meetings but that some changes can lead to increased involvement, the Guardian reports.

Right Whales' Decline

A research study plans to use genetic analysis to gain insight into population decline among North American right whales, according to CBC.

Science Papers Tie Rare Mutations to Short Stature, Immunodeficiency; Present Single-Cell Transcriptomics Map

In Science this week: pair of mutations in one gene uncovered in brothers with short stature and immunodeficiency, and more.