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IP Watch: Thermo Fisher, Predictive Biosciences, UMDNJ, Others Win US Patents

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Thermo Fisher Scientific has been awarded US Patent No. 8,378,115, "Monomethine dyes."

Charles Brush, Jianqin Liu, Peter Czerney, and Matthias Wenzel are named as inventors.

Describes monomethine dyes that have no or minimal fluorescence in buffer or in the presence of single-stranded DNA or RNA, but strongly fluoresce in the presence of double-stranded DNA. In one embodiment, the dye is useful in quantitative RT-PCR.


Protisvalor Mediterranee has been awarded US Patent No. 8,378,078, "Diagnosis of Whipple's disease."

Didier Raoult, Bernard La Scola, Marie-Laure Birg, and Florence Fenollar are named as inventors.

Relates to a method for in vitro seriological diagnosis of Whipple's disease, whereby the bacteria responsible for the disease are isolated and established in a culture and brought into contact with the serum or biological fluid of an infected patient. The invention also relates to useful oligonucleotides with a probe and a primer for amplifying, sequencing, and detecting the gene rpoB of the bacteria, Tropheryma whippelii.


Predictive Biosciences has been awarded US Patent No. 8,377,657, "Primers for analyzing methylated sequences and methods of use thereof."

Anthony Shuber is named as inventor.

Discloses primers having abasic regions or mismatches for amplifying and/or identifying sequences that are suspected of having methylation or are adjacent to suspected or known methylated sequences.


Medical Diagnostic Laboratories has been awarded US Patent No. 8,377,656, "Compositions and methods for detecting Cryptococcus neoformans."

Melanie Feola, John Entwistle, Martin Adelson, and Eli Mordechai are named as inventors.

Discloses oligonucleotides useful in methods for determining whether a sample contains Cryptococcus neoformans, a causative agent for human cryptococcosis. These oligonucleotides have nucleotide sequences derived from a coding segment of the gene encoding the fungal specific transcription factor gene in C. neoformans. The oligos are useful as forward and reverse primers for a PCR using nucleic acids from a biological sample as templates, and as probes for detecting any resultant amplicon. Detection of an amplicon indicates the sample contains C. neoformans. The patent also describes real-time PCR and detection using florescence resonance energy transfer.


The University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey has been awarded US Patent No. 8,377,655, "Assay for the measurement of IGF type 1 receptor and insulin receptor expression."

Teresa Wood and Anne Rowzee are named as inventors.

Relates to a quantitative PCR assay that differentiates between IR-A, IR-B, and IGF-IR mRNAs and compares expression of the three receptors on the same scale.

The Scan

Panel Votes for COVID-19 Pill

A US Food and Drug Administration panel has voted to support the emergency use authorization of an antiviral pill for COVID-19 from Merck and Ridgeback Biotherapeutics, CNN says.

But Not Harm

New Scientist reports that UK bioethicists say that though gene editing may improve food production, it should not harm livestock welfare.

Effectiveness Drop Anticipated

Moderna's Stéphane Bancel predicts that that current SARS-CoV-2 vaccines may be less effective against the Omicron variant, the Financial Times reports.

Cell Studies of Human Chromatin Accessibility, SARS-CoV-2 Variants, Cell Signaling Networks

In Cell this week: chromatin accessibility maps of adult human tissues, modeling to track SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern, and more.