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USPTO Publishes One Patent, Four Patent Applications Related to RNAi: Sep 28, 2006

Title: Compositions and Methods for Enhancing Oligonucleotide-Mediated Gene Alteration 
Number: 7,112,405
Filed: Sept. 27, 2002
Lead Inventor: Eric Kmiec, University of Delaware
According to the patent’s abstract, the invention comprises “compositions and methods for enhancing oligonucleotide-directed nucleic acid sequence alteration in vivo, ex vivo, and in vitro. … These methods and compositions involve cells and cell-free extracts with altered levels or activities of a protein from the RAD52 epistasis group, the mismatch repair group, and/or the excision repair group.”

Title: Inducible Small RNA Expression Constructs for Targeted Gene Silencing     
Number: 20060212950
Filed: Jan. 15, 2004 PCT Filed: Jan. 15, 2004
Lead Inventor: Thomas Tuschl, Max-Planck
“The invention relates to vectors for the inducible expression of RNA molecules in eukaryotic, particularly mammalian cells and transgenic animals,” the patent application states.

Title: RNA Interference-Mediated Inhibition of Hepatitis C Virus Gene Expression Using Short-Interfering Nucleic Acid         
Number: 20060211642
Filed: Dec. 19, 2005
Lead Inventor: James McSwiggen, Sirna Therapeutics
“This invention relates to compounds, compositions, and methods useful for modulating hepatitis C virus gene expression using short interfering nucleic acid molecules,” the patent application’s abstract states. “This invention also relates to compounds, compositions, and methods useful for modulating the expression and activity of other genes involved in pathways of HCV gene expression and/or activity by RNA interference using small nucleic acid molecules. In particular, the … invention features small nucleic acid molecules … and methods used to modulate the expression of HCV genes, including cocktails of such small nucleic acid molecules and lipid nanoparticle formulations of such small nucleic acid molecules cocktails thereof. The application also relates to methods of treating diseases and conditions associated with HCV gene expression, such as HCV infection, hepatocellular carcinoma, cirrhosis, liver failure, as well as providing dosing regimens and treatment protocols,” the abstract adds.

Title: Methods of Down Regulating Target Gene Expression In Vivo by Introduction of Interfering RNA
Number: 20060211637
Filed: Aug. 6, 2003 PCT Filed: Aug. 6, 2003
Lead Inventor: Puthupparampil Scaria, Intradigm
According to its abstract, the patent application covers “methods and compositions … for down regulation of target gene expression in vivo by RNA interference. The methods are useful for target discovery and validation of gene-based drug development, and for treatment of human diseases.”

Title: Methods, Compositions, and Kits for Detection of microRNAs         
Number: 20060211000
Filed: March 21, 2005
Lead Inventor: Joseph Sorge, Stratagene
The invention “provides methods, nucleic acids, compositions, and kits for detecting microRNA in samples,” the patent application’s abstract states. “The methods comprise ligating two oligonucleotides together in an miRNA mediated fashion, and detection of the ligation product. The methods can further comprise amplification of the ligation product, such as by PCR. The nucleic acids, compositions, and kits typically comprise some or all of the components necessary to practice the method of the invention.”

The Scan

Study Finds Few FDA Post-Market Regulatory Actions Backed by Research, Public Assessments

A Yale University-led team examines in The BMJ safety signals from the US FDA Adverse Event Reporting System and whether they led to regulatory action.

Duke University Team Develops Programmable RNA Tool for Cell Editing

Researchers have developed an RNA-based editing tool that can target specific cells, as they describe in Nature.

Novel Gene Editing Approach for Treating Cystic Fibrosis

Researchers in Science Advances report on their development of a non-nuclease-based gene editing approach they hope to apply to treat cystic fibrosis.

Study Tracks Responses in Patients Pursuing Polygenic Risk Score Profiling

Using interviews, researchers in the European Journal of Human Genetics qualitatively assess individuals' motivations for, and experiences with, direct-to-consumer polygenic risk score testing.