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Patent Digest: Summer 2017

Innovations in biosensors, DNA nanotechnology, polymeric fiber fabrication and more

To realize its overarching goal to invent and commercialize disruptive solutions for healthcare, energy, architecture, robotics, and manufacturing, the Wyss Institute is creating a patent portfolio in relevant areas that are or can become an essential basis for specific business development and commercialization efforts. To learn more about these innovations, contact our Business Development Team.

The Wyss Institute’s U.S. patents issued between July and September 2017 are as follows:

Biomedical and chemical sensing with nanobeam photonic crystal cavities using optical bistability. Credit: Harvard University

Biomedical and chemical sensing with nanobeam photonic crystal cavities using optical bistability

U.S. Patent 9,772,284 (September 26, 2017)

Qimin Quan, Marko Loncar, and Frank Vollmer

Abstract: A miniature optical biosensor and biosensor array where high sensitivity for detection of biomolecular interaction does not require a fluorescent label. Non-linear frequency-shifts of optical resonators (‘nanobeams’) provide a digital all-or-nothing response to equilibrium binding of a biomarker to surface-immobilized bio-recognition elements, a signal suitable to identify active components in genetic and proteomic circuits, as well as toxic substances. The threshold level for the digital response is adjustable to accommodate for varying receptor affinities. A bistable cavity sensing (BCS) method can be used to track the shift of the resonance induced by the analyte more precisely than the conventional cavity sensing method, where the resolution is limited by the cavity linewidth. BCS method can be used to quantitate the concentration of the analyte, and their binding kinetics, affinities and etc.

Biosensors engineered from conditionally stable ligand-binding domains

U.S. Patent 9,766,255 (September 19, 2017)

George M. Church, Justin Feng, Daniel J. Mandell, David Baker, Stanley Fields, Benjamin Ward Jester, and Christine Elaine Tinberg

Abstract: Disclosed is a biosensor engineered to conditionally respond to the presence of specific small molecules, the biosensors including conditionally stable ligand-binding domains (LBDs) which respond to the presence of specific small molecules, wherein readout of binding is provided by reporter genes or transcription factors (TFs) fused to the LBDs.

Methods for the fabrication of polymeric fibers. Credit: Harvard University

DNA origami devices

U.S. Patent 9,765,341 (September 19, 2017)

Ido Bachelet, Shawn Douglas, and George Church

Abstract: Provided herein are DNA origami devices useful in the targeted delivery of biologically active entities to specific cell populations.

Methods for the fabrication of polymeric fibers

U.S. Patent 9,738,046 (August 22, 2017)

Kevin Kit Parker, Mohammad Reza Badrossamay, and Josue Adrian Goss

Abstract: In accordance with an exemplary embodiment, a method is provided for forming a micron, submicron and/or nanometer dimension polymeric fiber. The method includes providing a stationary deposit of a polymer. The method also includes contacting a surface of the polymer to impart sufficient force in order to decouple a portion of the polymer from the contact and to fling the portion of the polymer away from the contact and from the deposit of the polymer, thereby forming a micron, submicron and/or nanometer dimension polymeric fiber.

Laser-actuated therapeutic nanoparticles

U.S. Patent 9,731,012 (August 15, 2017)

Praveen Arany and David J. Mooney

Abstract: The invention provides compositions and methods for laser actuated drug delivery. Compositions comprise serum albumin based particles conjugated with therapeutic agents which cab become bioavailable upon actuation of the particles by light, e.g. low power laser.

Laser-actuated therapeutic nanoparticles. Credit: Harvard University

De novo design of allosteric proteins

U.S. Patent 9,721,061 (August 1, 2017)

Srivatsan Raman, Noah D. Taylor, and George M. Church

Abstract: Methods and compositions for making and isolating allosteric DNA binding proteins that bind to one or more allosteric effectors to induce a conformation change in the proteins are provided.

Lipid-coated nucleic acid nanostructures of defined shape

U.S. Patent 9,717,685 (August 1, 2017)

William M. Shih and Steven Perrault

Abstract: The invention provides nanoparticles containing a nucleic acid nanostructure, of defined shape and size, linked to a hydrophobic moiety and coated by lipids, compositions comprising the nanoparticles, and methods of producing and methods of using the nanoparticles.

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