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IP Watch: Recent Patents Related to PCR, Nucleic Acid Amplification, and Sample Prep: Jan 26, 2011

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Eppendorf Array Technologies has been awarded US Patent No. 7,875,442, "Identification and quantification of a plurality of biological (micro)organisms or their components."

Isabelle Alexandre, Sylvain Margaine, Dieter Husar, Nathalie Zammatteo, Heinz Koehn, and Jose Remacle are named as inventors on the patent.

Discloses a system and method of conducting real-time PCR. Unlabeled capture molecules of a specific design are immobilized on a solid support, and contacted with amplicons produced in one or more PCR cycles. Detection of amplicons may take place during or between the PCR cycles while the solid support is in fluidic contact with the PCR solution. In an alternate embodiment, detection of the amplicons takes place when the solid support is not in fluidic contact with the PCR solution. The method is suitable for the simultaneous detection and quantification of closely homologous target molecules.


Gen-Probe has been awarded US Patent No. 7,875,441, "Oligonucleotides for detecting human papillomavirus in a test sample."

Patricia Gordon, Nick Carter, Steven Brentano, and Philip Hammond are named as inventors on the patent.

Discloses oligonucleotides targeted to human papillomavirus type 16 and/or type 18 nucleic acid sequences, which are particularly useful to aid in detecting HPV type 16 and/or 18. The oligonucleotides can aid in detecting HPV type 16 and/or type 18 in different ways, such as by acting as hybridization assay probes, helper probes, and/or amplification primers.


Kaohsiung Medical University has been awarded US Patent No. 7,875,432, "Method for diagnosing spinal muscular atrophy."

Shou-Mei Wu, Chun-Chiu Wang, Jan-Gowth Chang, and Yuh-Jyh Jong are named as inventors on the patent.

Discloses a method for diagnosing spinal muscular atrophy. The method includes providing a biological sample of a subject containing a nucleotide of the SMN gene; amplifying SMN exons 1, 2a, 2b, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8 by a universal multiplex PCR using the nucleotide as a template and the primers to obtain fragments of the exons; labeling the fragments of the exons with a fluorescent primer; and analyzing the fluorescence-labeled exon fragments by capillary electrophoresis. If the SMN1/SMN2 ratios in exon 7 and 8 are different, it indicates that the subject is susceptible to spinal muscular atrophy. Additionally, if the peak of certain exon fragment appears crossed, it indicates an intragenic mutation in the exon.


Stanford University has been awarded US Patent No. 7,875,428, "Multiplexed assay and probes for identification of HPV types."

Nader Pourmand, Baback Gharizadeh, and Ronald Davis are named as inventors on the patent.

Discloses a DNA microarray, preferably in the form of a chip, that contains probes which hybridize to generate primers capable of amplifying approximately 89 human papillomavirus types. These target the E1 region of the gene. The design of the chip allows for the detection of any known HPV type, based on a unique probe sequence derived from the HPV E1 region. The assay utilizes a number of primers that can amplify from about one to six different types of HPV. A large number of primers can be used together. After amplification, the amplicons are contacted with specific probes that are unique for each HPV type. The array further employs a control sequence, which normalizes variability due to sample size.


Applied Biosystems (Life Technologies) has been awarded US Patent No. 7,875,425, "Methods for monitoring polymerase chain reactions."

Stephen Gunstream and Patrick Kinney are named as investors on the patent.

Describes a method for calibrating temperature that can include cycling temperatures of a set of wells, wherein each well of the set comprises a sample with a spectrally distinguishable species. The method can further include measuring a signal from the spectrally distinguishable species for each well at a temperature during a first temperature cycle, and calibrating the temperatures for measuring the signal from each well during subsequent temperature cycles.

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