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Recent Patents of Interest in Proteomics: Mar 6, 2008

US Patent 7,336,812. System for microvolume laser scanning cytometry. Inventors: Louis Dietz Ian Walton; Chih-Hua Chung; Scott Norton; James Winkler; Aaron Kantor; Byron Lee; Shalom Tsur. Assignee: PPD Biomarker
Invention pertains to an integrated system for biological marker identification. The system uses microvolume laser scanning microscopy to measure expression of biological markers in fluids and includes instrumentation for performing MLSC and improved particle detection and analysis methods. The system comprises an informatics architecture “for the analysis of data obtained from the MLSC in tandem with other medical information,” according to the abstract.

US Patent 7,335,486. Method for universal enzymatic production of bioactive peptides. Inventors; Fred Wagner; Peng Luan; Yuannan Xia; Daniel Strydom; Edwin Merrifield; Mary Bossard; Barton Holmquist; Jin Seog Seo. Assignee: Restoragen
Provided are methods for making peptides from a polypeptide containing one or more copies of the peptide using clostripain to excise the peptide from the polypeptide.

US Patent 7,335,478. Reactivation-based molecular interaction sensors. Inventors: Robert Balint; Jeng-Horng Her. Assignee; KaloBios Pharmaceuticals
Invention pertains to methods and systems for “linking the functional activation of a responder molecule to the interaction of two or more binding ensemble members of interest,” according to the abstract. This may be done in vitro or in vivo,” producing a signal, phenotype, or other functional output in response to the interaction of the binding ensemble members.”

US Patent 7,333,896. Quality assurance/quality control for high-throughput bioassay process. Inventors: Ben Hitt; Peter Levine; Emanuel Petrocoin. Assignee: Correlogic Systems
A method is described that includes generating a bioassay process model, comparing spectral data based on a combination of a biochip and test serum to the bioassay process model to test whether the test sample and bioassay process are producing acceptable data. “Alternatively, the method may include comparing spectral data based on a combination of serum and diluents used in an electrospray process to the bioassay process model,” according to the abstract. If the bioassay process and test sample fall within the model, the produced spectrum can by analyzed further.

US Patent 7,333,895. Quality assurance for high-throughput bioassay methods. Inventors: Ben Hitt; Peter Levine; Timothy Coleman. Assignee: Correlogic Systems
The methods described allow for the monitoring of an entire system for obtaining spectral data from biological samples. The method includes generation of a bioassay process model, comparing a test sample against the bioassay process model.

US Patent 7,32,355. Method and compositions for the detection of protein glycosylation. Inventors: Linda Hsieh-Wilson; Nelly Khidekel; Hwan-Ching Tai; Sabine Arndt. Assignee: California Institute of Technology
Methods described in the invention can be used to detect O-GlcNAc- post-translational modifications on proteins that other techniques could not detect, the authors say in the abstract.

US Patent 7,332,299. Endomannosidases in the modificaion of glycoproteins in eukaryotes. Inventor: Stephen Hamilton. Assignee: GlycoFi
Invention pertains to methods of modifying the glycosylation structures of recombinant proteins expressed in fungi and other lower eukaryotes to resemble more closely the glycosyation of proteins from higher mammals, in particular, humans. It also relates to novel enzymes and nucleic acids encoding them and hosts ”engineered to express the enzymes, methods for producing modified glycoproteins in hosts and modified glycoproteins so produced,” according to the abstract.

US Patent 7,332,296. Screening assay for enzymes involved in pathophysiology using SELDI-TOF mass spectrometry. Inventors: Khalid Elased; Mariana Morris. Assignee: Wright State University
The methods described relate to the quantification of enzymatic activity of an enzyme with a known substrate. The methods are suitable for assaying aspects of the rennin-angiotensis system and may be used to evaluate and/or monitor biological conditions associated with the rennin-angiotensis system “prior to the manifestation of known physiological and biomarkers for such conditions,” according to the abstract.

US Patent 7,332,286. Peptide or protein microassay method and apparatus. Inventors: Scott Diamond. Assignee: University of Pennsylvania
Invention pertains to a peptide or protein microassay method and apparatus in which a “wide variety of choromogenic or fluorogenic peptide or protein substrates … are individually suspended or dissolved in a hydrophilic carrier with aliquots of each substrate … deposited in an array or microarray of reaction loci…” according to the abstract. Each dot provides an individual reaction vessel containing the peptide or protein of interest, and biological samples may be applied to each dot for assay purposes.

US Patent 7,332,268. Layered support sheet for high-yield spot cutting from gels or membranes. Inventors: Kevin Thornton; Randy Gordon-Gilmore; Dan McEachern. Assignee: Bio-Rad Laboratories
By interposing a relatively pliable, intermediate layer on the side of the surface facing the gel or membrane, the excision of sample spots by pressing a cutting tool terminating in a hollow cylinder against the gel or membrane supported on a rigid surface can be made more reliable.

US Patent 7,331,511. Biopolymeric array scanners capable of automatic scale factor selection for a plurality of different dyes, and methods for making and using the same. Inventors: John Corson; Scott Connell; Srinka Ghosh. Assignee: Agilent Technologies
Invention provides biopolymeric array scanners capable of automatically selecting a dye-specific scale factor “to employ for a plurality of different dyes, as well as methods for making and using the same,” according to the abstract. Methods for obtaining collections of nominal scale factors and computer-readable mediums comprising the same are also provided.

The Scan

Missed Early Cases

A retrospective analysis of blood samples suggests early SARS-CoV-2 infections may have been missed in the US, the New York Times reports.

Limited Journal Editor Diversity

A survey finds low diversity among scientific and medical journal editors, according to The Scientist.

How Much of a Threat?

Science writes that need for a provision aimed at shoring up genomic data security within a new US bill is being questioned.

PNAS Papers on Historic Helicobacter Spread, Brain Development, C. difficile RNAs

In PNAS this week: Helicobacter genetic diversity gives insight into human migrations, gene expression patterns of brain development, and more.