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Nanogen Expands Patent Portfolio in Genetic Analysis Technologies

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Nanogen, Inc. has announced that its subsidiary Epoch Biosciences has been issued two patents by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for technologies related to genetic analysis.

The patents further bolster Nanogen's intellectual property position in genetic analysis technologies. U.S. Patent 6,972,339 "Compounds and Methods for Fluorescent Labeling," covers technologies that allow the high-throughput synthesis of fluorescently labeled nucleic acid probes and primers.

The second, U.S. Patent No. 6,972,328, "Non-aggregating Non-quenching Oligomers Comprising Nucleotide Analogs, Method of Synthesis and Use Thereof" relates to the synthesis and use of pyrazoloprimidine and 7-deazapurine nucleosides as replacements for the natural guanosine nucleoside in diagnostic nucleic acid oligomers.

"Our extensive investment in the development of genetic analysis technologies is paying off with the building of a strong IP portfolio in real-time PCR, mirroring our strong position in electronic microarrays," noted Howard C. Birndorf, chairman and chief executive officer of Nanogen.

"As molecular diagnostics gains further market penetration, these underlying technologies position Nanogen to address labs' needs with differentiated advanced diagnostic products."

The '339 patent describes fluorescent dyes and methods of preparation of fluorescently labeled biological probes including the high-throughput manufacturing of nucleic acid probes and primers that are used in Nanogen's MGB Alert™ and MGB Eclipse® assay formats.

The manufacturing methods covered by the '339 patent may be applicable to other genomic analysis formats used in competitors' DNA sequencing, genotyping and gene expression analysis assays.

The '328 patent relates to the use of pyrazolopyrimidine and 7-deazapurine nucleosides as replacements for the natural guanosine (G) nucleoside in nucleic acid probes.