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IP Update: Recent Patents, Patent Applications Awarded to Applied Biosystems, Santaris, Monsanto, and More

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Title: microRNA as a Cancer Progression Indicator and Its Use for Treating Cancer

Patent Number: 8,404,437

Filed: March 29, 2011

Lead Inventor: Shih-Hwa Chiou, Taipei Veterans General Hospital

The invention, the patent’s abstract states, is based on “a novel function for miR142-3p in the regulation of Sox2, adenylyl cyclase 9 and CD133 expression … and consequently the overall stemness of recurrent [glioblastoma multiforme] cells as well as [cancer stem cells], and that miR142-3p modulated tumor-initiating properties in recurrent GBM.”


Title: Methods and Compositions for Isolating Small RNA Molecules

Patent Number: 8,404,439

Filed: Nov. 2, 2009

Inventor: Richard Conrad, Applied Biosystems

The invention, the patent’s abstract states, “concerns the use of methods and compositions for the isolation of small RNA molecules such as microRNA and siRNA molecules. Such molecules are routinely lost in commonly used isolation procedures and therefore the … invention allows for a much higher level of enrichment or isolation of these small RNA molecules.”


Title: RNA Interference for the Treatment of Heart Failure

Patent Number: 8,404,658

Filed: Dec. 23, 2008

Lead Inventor: Roger Hajjar, NanoCor Therapeutics

The invention relates to “targeted RNAi for the treatment of heart failure by modulating defective cardiac Ca2+ homeostasis via decreasing expression or activity of phospholamban using adeno-associated virus transfection of cardiomyocytes,” according to the patent’s abstract. “Methods for decreasing ventricular arrhythmias, as well as methods for overall improvement of survival from heart failure in subjects, are also disclosed. Further, the … invention provides methods which can be used to diagnose susceptibility to treatment by RNAi, and includes pharmaceutical compositions, kits, and vectors including an RNAi sequence.”


Title: Pharmaceutical Compositions for Treatment of microRNA-Related Diseases

Patent Number: 8,404,659

Filed: March 9, 2009

Lead Inventor: Sakari Kauppinen, Santaris Pharma

The invention, the patent’s abstract states, “provides compositions and methods of treatment of diseases that are sensitive to drugs that down-regulate the function of microRNAs, mRNA, non-coding RNA, or viral genomes. In particular, it has been discovered that a very long-term effect of an anti-microRNA oligonucleotide may be obtained when administered to a primate. Therefore, the … invention relates to pharmaceutical compositions and methods for treatment of primates, including humans wherein the compositions are administered with a long time interval.”


Titles: Short Interfering Ribonucleic Acid for Oral Administration

Patent Numbers: 8,404,831; 8,404,832

Filed: Aug. 26, 2011

Lead Inventor: Francois Jean-Charles Natt, Novartis

The inventions, the patents’ abstracts state, comprise “short interfering ribonucleic acid for oral administration … [with each] siRNA comprising two separate RNA strands that are complementary to each other over at least 15 nucleotides, wherein each strand is 49 nucleotides or less, and wherein at least one of which strands contains at least one chemical modification.”


Title: Double-Stranded RNA Stabilized in Planta

Patent Number: 8,404,927

Filed: June 13, 2006

Lead Inventor: Edwards Allen, Monsanto

The invention comprises “recombinant DNA constructs that transcribe to RNA having improved resistance to a plant RNase III enzyme, and methods for their use in making transgenic plant cells, plants, seeds, and products derived therefrom,” according to the patent’s abstract. “Also provided are compositions and methods for imparting to a plant resistance to a pest or pathogen of the plant.”


Title: Method and Biomarker for Evaluating Metastasis, and siRNA Compound for Inhibiting Metastasis

Application Number: 20130071856

Filed: Aug. 31, 2012

Lead Inventor: Pao-Chi Liao, National Cheng Kung University

The patent application, its abstract states, claims “a method and biomarker for evaluating metastasis and an siRNA compound for inhibiting metastasis.”


Title: Novel shRNA Molecules and Methods of Use Thereof

Application Number: 20130071928

Filed: June 29, 2012

Inventor: Donald Rao, Gradalis

The invention, the patent application’s abstract states, “relates to certain novel shRNA molecules and methods of use thereof. … Such methods generally comprise providing a cell with one or more precursor nucleic acid sequences that encode two or more RNA molecules.”


Title: Compounds and Methods for Peptide Ribonucleic Acid Condensate Particles for RNA Therapeutics

Application Number: 20130072424

Filed: May 18, 2012

Lead Inventor: Roger Adami, Marina Biotech

The patent application, its abstract states, claims “compounds comprising condensed particles having diameters less than 1000 nm, wherein the particles comprise one or more double-stranded ribonucleic acids and one or more peptides. The compounds, compositions and methods are useful for modulating gene expression by RNA interference.”


Title: RNA Interference of Galectin-3 Expression and Methods of Use Thereof

Application Number: 20130072540

Filed: Sept. 19, 2011

Inventor: Swey-Shen Chen, IGE Therapeutics

“Galectin-3 is a pro-inflammatory molecule functioning as a cytokine hub, and also regulates unfolded protein responses and [endoplasmic reticulum] stress,” the patent application’s abstract states. “Thus, galectin-3 serves as a target for ameliorating inflammatory diseases such as allergic inflammation and diabetic inflammation and insulin resistance. RNA interference of endogenous galectin-3 expression up-regulates IL-12 [and] IL-10, while down-regulating IL-23 production, which offers protection against allergic inflammation. In addition, endogenous galectin-3 knockdown causes up-regulation of XBP1, alleviating ER stress. Together, up-regulated XBP1 and IL-10 offer protection against obesity-induced inflammation. Therefore, the embodiment of the invention resides in RNA interference of endogenous galectin-3 in appropriate cell types in order to rectify allergic and/or diabetic inflammation.”


Title: miRNA Molecule Defined by Its Source and Its Diagnostic and Therapeutic Uses in Diseases or Conditions Associated with EMT

Application Number: 20130072545

Filed: Sept. 3, 2012

Lead Inventor: Roel Schaapveld, InteRNA Technologies

“The invention relates to the diagnostic and therapeutic uses of a miRNA molecule or an equivalent thereof” that is related to epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition, the patent application’s abstract states.

The Scan

Interfering With Invasive Mussels

The Chicago Tribune reports that researchers are studying whether RNA interference- or CRISPR-based approaches can combat invasive freshwater mussels.

Participation Analysis

A new study finds that women tend to participate less at scientific meetings but that some changes can lead to increased involvement, the Guardian reports.

Right Whales' Decline

A research study plans to use genetic analysis to gain insight into population decline among North American right whales, according to CBC.

Science Papers Tie Rare Mutations to Short Stature, Immunodeficiency; Present Single-Cell Transcriptomics Map

In Science this week: pair of mutations in one gene uncovered in brothers with short stature and immunodeficiency, and more.