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IP Update: Recent Patents, Patent Applications Awarded to Nitto Denko, Novartis, DuPont, and More

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Title: Drug Carrier and Drug Carrier Kit for Inhibiting Fibrosis

Patent Number: 8,178,124

Filed: Sept. 29, 2011

Lead Inventor: Yoshiro Niitsu, Nitto Denko

The patent, its abstract states, claims “an astrocyte-specific drug carrier containing a retinoid derivative and/or a vitamin A analog as a constituent,” and a related drug-delivery method.

“By binding a drug carrier to a retinoid derivative ... or encapsulating [it] in the drug carrier, a drug for therapeutic use can be delivered specifically to astrocytes,” it adds. “As a result, an astrocyte-related disease can be efficiently and effectively inhibited or prevented while minimizing side effects.” The patent specifically claims an siRNA targeting heat shock protein 47 to inhibit fibrosis.


Title: Ribonucleic Acid Interference Molecules and Binding Sites Derived by Analyzing Intergenic and Intronic Regions of Genes

Patent Number: 8,178,503

Filed: April 21, 2006

Lead Inventor: Isidore Rigoutsos, IBM

The invention, the patent's abstract states, relates to “a method for regulating the expression of a transcript [that] comprises [the use of] at least one interfering RNA molecule that binds to an area of transcript containing a region that corresponds to at least one [pre-defined] sequence … [with] the interfering RNA molecule regulating the expression of the transcript through post-transcriptional silencing. In another aspect, a method for regulating the expression of a transcript comprises at least one of the provided sequences … being used to design an interfering RNA molecule that contains a region that corresponds to the reverse complement of one or more [pre-defined] sequences … [with] the interfering molecule regulating, through post-transcriptional silencing, transcripts that contain the sequence.”


Title: Oligomeric Compounds and Compositions for Use in Modulation of Small Non-Coding RNAs

Patent Number: 8,178,506

Filed: Dec. 30, 2008

Lead Inventor: Bridget Lollo, Regulus Therapeutics

The invention comprises “compounds, compositions and methods ... for modulating the expression and function of small non-coding RNAs,” the patent's abstract states. “The compositions comprise oligomeric compounds, targeted to small non-coding RNAs. Methods of using these compounds for modulation of small non-coding RNAs, as well as downstream targets of these RNAs, and for diagnosis and treatment of disease associated with small non-coding RNAs, are also provided.”


Title: Compounds, Compositions, and Methods of Treating Cancer and Fibrotic Diseases

Application Number: 20120114704

Filed: March 23, 2010

Inventor: Elena Feinstein, Quark Pharmaceuticals

The invention, the patent application's abstract states, comprises “antibodies or antigen-binding fragments thereof that specifically hind the Endo180 polypeptide and are internalized thereby … [as well as] conjugates comprising the molecules … compositions comprising the antibodies and conjugates, and … methods of using the same for delivery of therapeutic agents to cells that express the Endo180 polypeptide on the surface of the cell for treating cell proliferative diseases or disorders and fibrosis, and for controlling tumor progression.”


Title: Compositions and Methods to Treat Muscular and Cardiovascular Disorders

Application Number: 20120114744

Filed: Jan. 18, 2012

Lead Inventor: Iwan Beuvink, Novartis

The invention relates to “a novel microRNA, mir-208-2, implicated in muscular and cardiovascular disorders,” the patent application's abstract states. The invention also relates to “oligonucleotide therapeutic agents ... and their use in the treatment of muscular and cardiovascular disorders resulting from dysregulation of mir-208-2.”


Title: miRNA Biomarkers for the Diagnosis of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, Its Progression, and for Monitoring Therapeutic Interventions

Application Number: 20120115150

Filed: May 24, 2010

Lead Inventor: Irene Bozzoni, Sapienza University of Rome

The invention relates to the “diagnosis and therapy of muscle degenerative disorders, [such] as Duchenne muscular dystrophy, by means of a class of specific miRNAs.”


Title: Oligomeric Compounds and Compositions for the Use in Modulation of microRNAs

Application Number: 20120115228

Filed: Jan. 18, 2012

Lead Inventor: Christine Esau, Isis Pharmaceuticals

The patent application, its abstract states, claims “compounds, compositions, and methods … for modulating the levels [of] expression, processing, and function of miRNAs. The compositions comprise oligomeric compounds targeted to small non-coding RNAs and miRNAs. The oligomeric compounds possess potent miRNA inhibitory activity, and further exhibit improved therapeutic index. Further provided are methods for selectively modulating miRNA [activity] in a cell.”


Title: Down-Regulation of Gene Expression Using Artificial microRNA

Application Number: 20120115234

Filed: Jan. 11, 2012

Inventor: Brian McGonigle, DuPont

The patent application, its abstract states, claims “isolated nucleic acid fragments comprising precursor miRNA, and artificial miRNAs and their use in down-regulating gene expression.”


Title: siRNA Compositions Promoting Scar-Free Wound Healing of Skin and Methods for Wound Treatment

Application Number: 20120115923

Filed: Dec. 29, 2006

Lead Inventor: Wei-Wu He, Intradigm (Silence Therapeutics)

“This invention describes compositions and methods using siRNA to target various genes expressed in cells of injured tissue during scar formation to promote scar-free wound healing,” according to the patent application's abstract.


Title: miRNA … Its Targets … [and] the Proteins Made Based on the Targets as a Prognostic, Diagnostic Biomarker[s], and Therapeutic Agent[s] for Cancer

Application Number: 20120115928

Filed: March 26, 2010

Lead Inventor: Guillaume Vetter, University of Luxembourg

The patent application claims the use of miRNA-661 to treat and/or diagnose cancer, neuronal disease, and infection, its abstract states.


Titles: Organic Compounds to Treat Beta-ENaC-Related Disease

Application Numbers: 20120115934, 20120115934

Filed: Jan. 23, 2012

Lead Inventor: Antonin de Fougerolles, Alnylam Pharmaceuticals (Novartis)

The inventions relate to “RNAi agents useful in methods of treating beta-ENaC-related diseases such as cystic fibrosis, pseudohypoaldosteronism type 1, Liddle's syndrome, hypertension, alkalosis, hypokalemia, and obesity-associated hypertension, using a therapeutically effective amount of a RNAi agent to beta-ENaC,” according to their abstracts.


Title: Drought-Tolerant Plants and Related Constructs and Methods Involving Genes Encoding miR-827

Application Number: 20120117687

Filed: Jan. 23, 2012

Lead Inventor: Milo Aukerman, DuPont

The invention, the patent application's abstract states, relates to “Isolated polynucleotides and polypeptides and recombinant DNA constructs useful for conferring drought tolerance, compositions comprising these recombinant DNA constructs, and methods utilizing these recombinant DNA constructs. The recombinant DNA construct comprises a polynucleotide operably linked to a promoter that is functional in a plant, wherein said polynucleotide encodes … miR-827.”

The Scan

Researchers Develop Polygenic Risk Scores for Dozens of Disease-Related Exposures

With genetic data from two large population cohorts and summary statistics from prior genome-wide association studies, researchers came up with 27 exposure polygenic risk scores in the American Journal of Human Genetics.

US Survey Data Suggests Ancestry Testing Leads Way in Awareness, Use of Genetic Testing Awareness

Although roughly three-quarters of surveyed individuals in a Genetics in Medicine study reported awareness of genetic testing, use of such tests was lower and varied with income, ancestry, and disease history.

Coral Genome Leads to Alternative Amino Acid Pathway Found in Other Non-Model Animals

An alternative cysteine biosynthesis pathway unearthed in the Acropora loripes genome subsequently turned up in sequences from non-mammalian, -nematode, or -arthropod animals, researchers report in Science Advances.

Mosquitos Genetically Modified to Prevent Malaria Spread

A gene drive approach could be used to render mosquitos unable to spread malaria, researchers report in Science Advances.