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IP Watch: Roche, Cepheid, Siemens, Biomérieux, and Abbott Win US Patents

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Roche has been awarded US Patent No. 8,119,353, "Rapid one-step reverse transcriptase PCR."

Waltraud Ankenbauer, Ursula Grepl, and Rita Haerteis are named as inventors on the patent.

Covers a method for performing a one-step reverse transcriptase PCR for amplifying a target RNA. The method comprises: (1) providing a sample that is supposed to contain said target RNA; (2) adding a reaction mixture comprising all reagents necessary to reverse transcribe said target RNA into cDNA and amplify at least a portion of said cDNA; (3) incubating said sample for a time interval of zero to 40 seconds at a temperature between 20° C and 65° C; and (4) subjecting said sample to multiple cycles of a thermocycling protocol wherein the temperature is varied between at least a first temperature between 37° C and 72° C, and a second temperature between 85° C and 100° C.

Roche has also been awarded US Patent No. 8,119,346, "Light emission modifiers and their uses in nucleic acid detection, amplification, and analysis."

Amar Gupta and Stephen Will are named as inventors on the patent.

Relates to methods and reagents for modifying the emission of light from labeled nucleic acids for the purpose of real-time detection, analysis, and quantitation of nucleic acid sequences, e.g., using singly labeled probes. These methods and reagents exploit advantageous properties of thiazine dyes and diazine dyes. Furthermore, the patent describes the use of these light emission modifiers in background reduction, nucleic acid duplex stabilization, and other areas. The patent also discloses related kits, reaction mixtures, and integrated systems.


Cepheid has been awarded US Patent No. 8,119,352, "Multi-stage amplification reactions by control of sequence replication times."

Lynn Kozma and David Swenson are named as inventors on the patent.

Provides methods and kits for conducting multiplex nucleic acid amplification reactions by controlling target sequence replication times. In one aspect, such control is exerted by selecting different lengths of target polynucleotides for amplification. In another aspect, control is exerted by providing sequence-specific polymerase inhibitors, such as specific blocking oligonucleotides. In accordance with the invention, multiple target polynucleotides can be sequentially amplified in a reaction conducted in different stages, wherein amplification of sequences with longer replication times is permitted in one stage but precluded in other stages by modifying polymerase extension times during the course of the reaction.


Siemens Healthcare Diagnostics has been awarded US Patent No. 8,119,349, "Methods and materials for detecting mutations in quasispecies having length polymorphisms."

Arejas Uzgiris and Sharon Kemp are named as inventors on the patent.

Describes a method for detecting the presence or absence of a mutation of interest in the nucleic acid of a pathogen, wherein the mutation of interest is located adjacent to a length polymorphism defining multiple quasispecies of the pathogen.


Biomérieux has been awarded US Patent No. 8,119,345, "Method for discriminating single nucleotide polymorphisms."

Jos Weusten and Maarten De Kock are named as inventors on the patent.

Describes a method and test kit for discriminating single nucleotide polymorphisms with improved sensitivity and specificity. The method may be used for genotyping a biological sample, and may include the following steps: Performing a real-time amplification of the target; generating multiple copies of amplicons in the presence of at least two different labeled probes, each probe allowing real-time detection at the SNP position of both the wildtype and at least one possible mutation; assessing the discriminatory variable value(s) based on the signals of each combination of two detection probes; and discriminating between the genotypes. The methods may be for diagnostic, preventive, and therapeutic applications.


Ibis Biosciences (Abbott) has been awarded US Patent No. 8,119,336, "Compositions for use in identification of alphaviruses."

Rangarajan Sampath, Thomas Hall, and Mark Eshoo are named as inventors on the patent.

Provides oligonucleotide primers and compositions and kits containing the same to rapidly identify alphaviruses by amplifying a segment of viral nucleic acid and subsequently analyzing molecular mass.

The Scan

US Booster Eligibility Decision

The US CDC director recommends that people at high risk of developing COVID-19 due to their jobs also be eligible for COVID-19 boosters, in addition to those 65 years old and older or with underlying medical conditions.

Arizona Bill Before Judge

The Arizona Daily Star reports that a judge weighing whether a new Arizona law restricting abortion due to genetic conditions is a ban or a restriction.

Additional Genes

Wales is rolling out new genetic testing service for cancer patients, according to BBC News.

Science Papers Examine State of Human Genomic Research, Single-Cell Protein Quantification

In Science this week: a number of editorials and policy reports discuss advances in human genomic research, and more.