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Six RNAi-Related Patent Applications Published by the US Patent Office: Aug 6, 2004


Title: Composition and Method for In Vivo and in Vitro Attenuation of Gene Expression Using Double-Stranded RNA. Number: 20040147475. Filed: Feb. 5, 2004. Lead Inventor: Yin-Xiong Li, Medical College of Georgia Research Institute.

According to the abstract, the invention relates to the “introduction of double-stranded RNA into cells, cell culture, organs and tissue, and whole organisms, particularly vertebrates, [in order to] specifically [attenuate] gene expression.”

Title: Complex for Facilitating Delivery of dsRNA into a Cell and Uses Thereof. Number: 20040147027. Filed: Jan. 28, 2003. Lead Inventor: Carol Troy, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons.

“The present invention provides a membrane-permeable complex for facilitating the delivery of a double-stranded ribonucleic acid molecule into a cell,” the patent application’s abstract states. “Specifically, the invention provides a membrane-permeable complex that comprises a double-stranded ribonucleic acid molecule, such as a small interfering RNA, a cell-penetrating peptide, and a covalent bond linking the [two]. Also provided are methods of using the membrane-permeable complex … to deliver the [dsRNA] molecule to a cell or to inhibit expression of a gene product by a cell.”

Title: Structural Compounds and Processes for Single-Pot Attachment of a Label to siRNA. Number: 20040146867. Filed: Jan. 24, 2003. Lead Inventor: Paul Slattum, Mirus.

The patent application states that the invention relates to “compounds and methods … for a single-pot attachment of a label to an siRNA [by] forming a covalently attachable labeling reagent for alkylating the molecule. Then, [the invention comprises] combining the … reagent with a mixture containing the molecule, under conditions wherein the labeling reagent has reactivity with the molecule thereby forming a covalent bond,” it adds.

Title: Novel siRNA Gene Libraries and Methods for Their Production and Use. Number: 20040146858. Filed: July 23, 2003. Lead Inventor: Henry Li, Immusol.

The invention, states the patent application’s abstract, “relates to methods and compositions for the elucidation of gene function and the identification of novel genes. Specifically, the present invention relates to methods and compositions for improved functional genomic screening, function inactivation of specific essential or non-essential genes, and the identification of genes that are modulated in response to specific stimuli or encode recognizable phenotypic traits,” it states.

“In particular, the compositions of the present invention include, but are not limited to, expression cassettes comprising a novel dual promoter transcription system, that utilizes modified promoters, preferably containing complementary termination sequences, positioned across a coding sequence and in opposite orientation to each other,” the abstract adds. “In addition, the present invention includes libraries comprising the expression cassettes of the invention, including vectors for transforming cells, such as replication-deficient retroviral vectors. The invention also includes methods for the production and screening of dsRNA/siRNA libraries, as well as therapeutic uses for the siRNAs expressed in accordance with the invention.”

Title: Cross-Linked Oligomeric Compounds and Their Use in Gene Modulation. Number: 20040147470. Filed: Nov. 4, 2003. Lead Inventor: Muthiah Manoharan, Isis Pharmaceuticals.

According to the patent application’s abstract, the invention “provides modified oligomeric compounds that modulate gene expression via an RNA interference pathway. The oligomeric compounds of the invention include one or more cross-linkages that can improve nuclease resistance or modify or enhance the pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic properties of the oligomeric compound.”

Title: Chimeric Oligomeric Compounds and Their Use in Gene Modulation. Number: 20040147023. Filed: Nov. 4, 2003. Lead Inventor: Brenda Baker, Isis Pharmaceuticals.

“Oligomeric compositions comprising first and second oligomers are provided [by the invention] wherein at least a portion of the first oligomer is capable of hybridizing with at least a portion of the second oligomer; at least a portion of the first oligomer is complementary to and capable of hybridizing to a selected target nucleic acid; and at least one of the first or second oligomers includes at least one nucleotide comprising a chimeric organic composition,” the patent application’s abstract states. “Oligomer/protein compositions are also provided comprising an oligomer complementary to and capable of hybridizing to a selected target nucleic acid and at least one protein comprising at least a portion of an RNA-induced silencing complex.”


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