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IP Update: Recent Patents, Patent Applications Awarded to Medtronic, CSIRO, DuPont, and More

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Title: Expression System

Patent Number: 8,415,148

Filed: Aug. 2, 2011

Inventor: Jacques Perrault, San Diego State University

The invention, the patent’s abstract state, relates “generally to methods and compositions for expression of polypeptides or delivery of interfering RNAs in various cell types.”


Title: Devices, Systems, and Methods for Improving Memory and/or Cognitive Function through Brain Delivery of siRNA

Patent Number: 8,415,319

Filed: Sept. 23, 2011

Inventor: William Kaemmerer, Medtronic

The invention relates to “devices, systems, and methods for improving memory and/or cognitive function by brain delivery of compositions of small interfering RNA or vectors containing the DNA encoding for small interfering RNA,” according to the patent’s abstract. “Such compositions can be administered using devices, systems, and methods for direct delivery of the compositions to the brain, or using devices, systems, methods of delivery, and compositions that deliver small interfering RNA or vectors containing the DNA encoding the small interfering RNA across the blood-brain barrier. The … invention also provides valuable small interfering RNA vectors, and methods for reduction of BACE1 levels in the hippocampus, cerebral cortex, or other regions of the brain that have beneficial effects on improving memory and/or cognitive function in a subject.”


Title: Delivery of dsRNA to Arthropods

Patent Number: 8,415,320

Filed: July 10, 2012

Lead Inventor: Steven Whyard, Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization

The invention relates to “methods of gene silencing in arthropods using dsRNA,” the patent’s abstract states. “The method [includes] contacting the arthropod with, and/or directly feeding the arthropod the dsRNA … to deliver the dsRNA to arthropod tissues. It is envisaged that the methods of the invention will have use in determining the biological function of genes in arthropods. Methods of pest control of arthropods and of protecting arthropods against parasites and predators are provided. Transgenic arthropods expressing dsRNA molecules are also provided.”


Title: microRNAs for Inhibiting Viral Replication

Patent Number: 8,415,323

Filed: Aug. 27, 2008

Inventor: Michael David, University of California, Oakland

The invention relates to “reducing accumulation of viral genomes in a target cell,” the patent’s abstract states. “In particular, the … invention provides compositions and methods for combating viral infection through RNA interference. Specifically, the … invention provides cellular microRNA mimics for treating virus-infected subjects.”


Title: Duplex Oligonucleotides with Enhanced Functionality in Gene Regulation

Patent Number: 8,415,466

Filed: April 30, 2012

Lead Inventor: Anastasia Khvorova, Dharmacon (Thermo Fisher Scientific)

The patent, its abstract states, claims “methods of enhancing functionality of duplex oligonucleotides and compositions made by the methods. The duplex oligonucleotides include siRNAs, miRNA mimics, and piRNA mimics [that] contain modified nucleotides and mismatches between the two strands of the molecule at specific nucleotide positions.”


Title: Down-Regulation of Gene Expression using Artificial microRNAs

Patent Number: 8,415,526

Filed: Jan. 11, 2012

Inventor: Brian McGonigle, DuPont

The invention, the patent’s abstract states, relates to “isolated nucleic acid fragments comprising precursor miRNA, and artificial miRNAs and their use in down-regulating gene expression.”


Title: Methylated Coding and Non-Coding RNA Genes as Diagnostic and Therapeutic Tools for Human Melanoma

Application Number: 20130084328

Filed: April 26, 2012

Inventor: Ranjan Perera, Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute

The patent application, its abstract states, claims “methods for the diagnosis and treatment of human melanoma and prediction of early disease genesis to metastasis by assessing CpG island methylation or expression level of epigenetically regulated differentially expressed coding or non-coding genes. Methods of treatment of human melanoma by modifying or regulating the same pathways are also provided.”


Title: Novel Therapeutic RNA Interference Technology Targeted to the PDX-1 Oncogene in PDX-1-Expression Neuroendocrine Tumors

Application Number: 20130084331

Filed: Dec. 4, 2012

Lead Inventor: John Nemunaitis, Gradalis

The invention comprises a “bi-functional shRNA-based composition and methods for knocking down the expression of the PDX-1 oncogene in target cells,” the patent application’s abstract states. “The invention also provides methods to deliver the shRNA-containing expression vectors to target tissues overexpressing the PDX-1 oncogene.”


Title: Modified Nucleosides, Analogs Thereof, and Oligomeric Compounds Prepared Therefrom

Application Number: 20130084576

Filed: April 26, 2011

Lead Inventor: Thazha Prakash, Isis Pharmaceuticals

The invention comprises “modified nucleosides, analogs thereof, and oligomeric compounds prepared therefrom,” the patent application’s abstract states. “More particularly, the … invention provides modified nucleosides and analogs thereof that are useful for incorporation at the terminus of an oligomeric compound. Such oligomeric compounds can also be included in a double-stranded composition. In some embodiments, the oligomeric compounds provided herein are expected to hybridize to a portion of a target RNA resulting in loss of normal function of the target RNA.”


Title: microRNA-Based Methods and Compositions for the Diagnosis, Prognosis, and Treatment of Prostate-Related Disorders

Application Number: 20130085077

Filed: Sept. 19, 2012

Lead Inventor: Carlo Croce, Ohio State University

The invention relates to “methods and compositions for the diagnosis, prognosis, and/or treatment of prostate associated disorders,” 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.