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IP Watch: Samsung, Becton Dickinson, Sequenom, Stanford, Trovagene, iCubate, Win US Patents


Samsung Electronics has been awarded US Patent No. 8,386,191, "Method for quantifying initial concentration of nucleic acid from real-time nucleic acid amplification data."

Kak Namkoong, Jin-tae Kim, Young-sun Lee, and Young-a Kim are named as inventors.

Provides a method for quantifying an initial concentration of a nucleic acid from real-time nucleic acid amplification data. DNA or RNA extracted from an organism or virus is amplified using an enzyme. Then, the initial concentration of the nucleic acid is found by calculating the characteristic amplification cycle number or the characteristic amplification time at which the fluorescence intensity of the nucleic acid subtracted by the background fluorescence intensity of the nucleic acid has half of its maximum value; or the characteristic amplification cycle number or the characteristic amplification time at which the amplification efficiency has the maximum or the minimum value; or the prior-to-amplification fluorescence intensity of the nucleic acid subtracted by the background fluorescence intensity of the nucleic acid. Accordingly, the initial concentration of the nucleic acid can be calculated without differentiation or integration.

Becton Dickinson has been awarded US Patent No. 8,386,184, "Systems and methods for determining an amount of starting reagent using the polymerase chain reaction."

Miroslaw Bartkowiak and Richard Moore are named as inventors.

Describes systems and methods for calculating an initial amount of target nucleic acid N0 in a sample. A plurality of fluorescent measurements is received. Each respective fluorescent measurement FSn is taken in a different cycle n in a PCR amplification experiment of the sample. Then, a model for the PCR amplification experiment is computed. For each respective fluorescent measurement, the model comprises a respective equation for Nn, where (i) Nn is the calculated amount of the target nucleic acid in cycle n of the corresponding PCR amplification experiment, and (ii) the equation for Nn is expressed in terms of K and N0, where K is the Michaelis-Menton constant. The model can be refined by adjusting K and N0 until differences between model values Nn and corresponding fluorescent measurements are minimized, thereby calculating the initial amount of a target nucleic acid N0 as the minimized value for N0 for the model.

Sequenom has been awarded US Patent No. 8,383,795, "Detection and quantification of biomolecules using mass spectrometry."

Dirk Van Den Boom, Paul Oeth, and Payam Mahboubi are named as inventors.

The patent is directed in part to a method for detecting a target nucleic acid using oligonucleotides detectable by mass spectrometry. This method takes advantage of the 5'-to-3' nuclease activity of a nucleic acid polymerase to cleave annealed oligonucleotide probes from hybridized duplexes and release labels for detection by mass spectrometry. This process is easily incorporated into a PCR amplification assay. The patent also describes methods for the quantitative analysis of target nucleic acids.

Stanford University has been awarded US Patent No. 8,383,348, "Precircle probe nucleic acid amplification methods."

Thomas Willis, Paul Hardenbol, Maneesh Jain, Viktor Stolc, Mostafa Ronaghi, and Ronald Davis are named as inventors.

Describes methods of multiplexing nucleic acid reactions, including amplification, detection and genotyping. The invention relies on the use of precircle probes that are circularized in the presence of the corresponding target nucleic acids, cleaved, and then amplified.

Trovagene has been awarded US Patent No. 8,383,335, "Method for diagnosis and monitoring of viral infection by analysis of viral transrenal nucleic acids in urine."

Hovsep Melkonyan, Angela Cannas, Louis Tomei, and Samuil Umansky are named as inventors.

Relates to methods for diagnosing or monitoring viral infection by detecting the presence of transrenal viral nucleic acids or nucleic acids of viral origin in a urine sample, with or without isolation of nucleic acids. The analysis of the nucleic acids is performed through hybridization of the nucleic acids with specific probes, or through a chain amplification reaction with specific primers. The methods are applicable to all viral pathogenic agents, including RNA, DNA, episomal, or integrated viruses.

iCubate has been awarded US Patent No. 8,383,068, "Apparatus for performing amplicon rescue multiplex PCR."

Jeff Bertrand and Jian Han are named as inventors.

Describes a cassette for performing multiplex PCR. The cassette enables automated amplification and detection of multiple nucleic acid targets while limiting contamination. The device facilitates a two-amplification, two-primer PCR protocol that results in highly specific, highly sensitive, and semi-quantitative amplification of multiple nucleic acid targets. The cassette contains a cavity, a base with a plurality of chambers, a movable pipette to transfer reagents, and a detection area. The cassettes are single-use, disposable devices that may be loaded with reagents needed to detect multiple targets. The cassettes may be used in a hospital or clinical setting to quickly screen clinical samples and detect the presence of infectious agents.

The Scan

Positive Framing of Genetic Studies Can Spark Mistrust Among Underrepresented Groups

Researchers in Human Genetics and Genomics Advances report that how researchers describe genomic studies may alienate potential participants.

Small Study of Gene Editing to Treat Sickle Cell Disease

In a Novartis-sponsored study in the New England Journal of Medicine, researchers found that a CRISPR-Cas9-based treatment targeting promoters of genes encoding fetal hemoglobin could reduce disease symptoms.

Gut Microbiome Changes Appear in Infants Before They Develop Eczema, Study Finds

Researchers report in mSystems that infants experienced an enrichment in Clostridium sensu stricto 1 and Finegoldia and a depletion of Bacteroides before developing eczema.

Acute Myeloid Leukemia Treatment Specificity Enhanced With Stem Cell Editing

A study in Nature suggests epitope editing in donor stem cells prior to bone marrow transplants can stave off toxicity when targeting acute myeloid leukemia with immunotherapy.