Previous month:
August 2005
Next month:
October 2005

Third Wave involved in new patent fight

Third Wave involved in new patent fight

The Capital Times
September 30, 2005

The patent battles continue for Third Wave Technologies, as the Madison-based genetic technology company won another round in an old lawsuit and also faced a new lawsuit.

Third Wave announced Thursday that it has been granted a permanent injunction by federal court in Madison that prohibits Stratagene Corp. from making, selling or offering to sell its FullVelocity products and any other products that practice Third Wave's patented Invader method.

The permanent injunction also prohibits Stratagene from inducing or contributing to other infringing activities, and requires that Stratagene notify its customers and collaborators that its FullVelocity products infringe on Third Wave patents.

A federal jury earlier this month found Stratagene guilty of willfully infringing two key Third Wave patents and awarded Third Wave $5.3 million in damages. Third Wave is seeking additional damages, given the willful infringement verdict, with a decision expected before the end of the year.


Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Stem cell bank to be in Madison

Stem cell bank to be in Madison
Phill Trewyn
The National Institutes of Health has chosen Madison to be home to the nation's first national stem cell bank.

The stem cell bank will likely be located at the WiCell Research Institute, a nonprofit organization established in 1999 to advance stem cell research.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Real-time MRI helps doctors assess beating heart in fetus

Advanced imaging improves tools for evaluating heart disease before birth

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) techniques can provide real-time measurements of volume in a fetal heart, and may better enable physicians to plan care for infants with heart defects, according to a new study. By producing three-dimensional measurements, functional MRIs may represent an advance over the current technology, fetal echocardiography.

"With echocardiography, the heart looks like a shadow. It looks more like a heart with real-time MRI, with excellent soft tissue contrast," said pediatric cardiologist Mark A. Fogel, M.D., director of Cardiac MRI at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. A research team led by Dr. Fogel reported preliminary findings based on studies on two fetuses in the September/October 2005 issue of Fetal Diagnosis and Therapy. It was the first example of functional MRI used for cardiac imaging in fetuses.

MRI produces three-dimensional images, whereas echocardiography typically relies on geometric assumptions to measure how big the heart is in the fetus, added Dr. Fogel. One consequence of this capability is that MRI can directly measure the volume of the heart's ventricles.

Heart

Continue reading "Real-time MRI helps doctors assess beating heart in fetus" »

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

WARF-Promega deal pushes tech to market

WARF-Promega deal pushes tech to market

The Capital Times
September 29, 2005

Fitchburg-based Promega Corp. is the first company to sign onto a program designed to push life sciences technologies developed at UW-Madison into the real world.

Promega is paying an undisclosed fee to the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation for the right to test out the technologies. The company then can license those it wants.

"With an easier path to licensing technologies, ultimately, we can provide new products to life scientists sooner," said Randy Dimond, Promega chief technical officer. "Just as importantly, it means we can work closely with UW scientists when their research may lead to commercial products for the life science industry."

Elizabeth Donley, WARF business development director, called Promega "an ideal partner" for the program, which eventually is expected to expand to a handful of companies.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Jury: Johnson & Johnson stole patent from Florida cancer specialists

Jury: Johnson & Johnson stole patent from Florida cancer specialists

ATLANTIS, Fla. (AP) -- A federal jury says Johnson and Johnson stole a patent for an implant used in breast cancer detection from two Florida breast cancer specialists.

The jury has ordered the company to pay the pair two million dollars.

The Miami jury says the company must also agree to give Atlantis surgeon John Corbitt and physician assistant Lori Leonetti ten percent of an estimated 39 million in annual revenue from the implant if Johnson and Johnson wants to continue selling it.

Officials from a Johnson and Johnson subsidiary say they don't believe any patent laws had been violated, and they would consider an appeal.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Cloning ban heads toward expected veto

Cloning ban heads toward expected veto
Senate passes bill; Doyle says it targets stem cell studies
By STEVEN WALTERS
swalters@journalsentinel.com
Posted: Sept. 28, 2005

Madison - The Legislature on Wednesday sent Gov. Jim Doyle a bill that would make Wisconsin the eighth state to ban human cloning, but the governor insisted that the real target is stem cell research and promised to veto the measure.

The state Senate voted 21-12 to send Doyle the same ban on cloning passed by the Assembly.

Two Democrats, Sens. Jeff Plale of South Milwaukee and Roger Breske of the Town of Eland, joined all 19 Republicans in voting for the bill.

The 21 Senate votes is one fewer than the two-thirds majority needed to force the ban (AB 499) into law over the governor's objection.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Promega IDs a growing sector

Promega IDs a growing sector
00:00 am 9/29/05
JUDY NEWMAN jdnewman@madison.com

They're the types of tools used on television programs like "CSI" to help identify suspects and solve crimes.

In real life, they have been used to finger the 2002 Washington, D.C., snipers and to identify victims of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

Light-years beyond fingerprints, footprints and blood type, they are the test tubes and solutions used in DNA analysis - to identify people down to the very core of their cells.

And in Fitchburg is one of two U.S. companies that are the main producers of genetic identification tools.

Promega Corp. is a leader in developing the technology that's taken center-stage for implicating crime suspects - or exonerating them. In one well-known Wisconsin case, convicted rapist Steven Avery was freed in 2003 after DNA evidence showed he didn't commit the crime for which he had spent 18 years in prison.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

10-year plan lays out spending to improve state's power grid

Billions for power lines
10-year plan lays out spending to improve state's power grid
By THOMAS CONTENT
tcontent@journalsentinel.com
Posted: Sept. 27, 2005

A new long-range plan for the state's power grid to be unveiled today calls for spending $3.4 billion over the next 10 years to build additional power lines and improve existing lines, American Transmission Co. said.

The plan calls for almost 500 miles of new power lines and about 1,000 miles of rebuilt or upgraded lines in southern and north central Wisconsin.

The $3.4 billion estimate represents a jump of $600 million, or 21%, from a similar plan the company presented last fall. ATC already has spent nearly $500 million on power line improvements in the past several years.

"We're addressing the needs, but the needs are still there and we're still focusing on them," said Don Morrow, the company's director of planning.

The rising costs to shore up the state's power grid come at a time of soaring energy prices - both at the gas pump and for home heating. The state has also seen big jumps in the price of electricity in recent years.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Senate set to pass ban on human cloning

Senate set to pass ban on human cloning
Doyle promises veto; exemption to allow research to fight diseases is rejected in close vote
By STEVEN WALTERS
swalters@journalsentinel.com
Posted: Sept. 27, 2005

Madison - The state Senate was poised today to pass a bill banning human cloning - with no exception for research to fight crippling diseases - after an initial vote Tuesday showed the ban had enough votes to pass.

But Democratic Gov. Jim Doyle will veto the bill, which has already passed the Assembly, said Doyle aide Melanie Fonder.

"Everyone is against human cloning, but the real purpose for this bill is to prevent stem-cell research, and the governor will veto it," Fonder added.

In emotional debate Tuesday, senators refused, on a 17-16 vote, to exempt therapeutic research, which legislators said is not yet being done in Wisconsin. Some argued that such research offers hope to those suffering diseases such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and multiple sclerosis and from spinal cord injuries.

After that, Democrats then delayed to today a final vote on the bill (AB 599).

The sponsor of the bill, Sen. Joe Leibham (R-Sheboygan), and leaders of Wisconsin Right to Life, which is pushing the change, said it has more than enough votes to pass the Senate.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Johnson Controls works on new battery technology

Company joins drive for hybrid vehicles
Johnson Controls works on new battery technology
By THOMAS CONTENT
tcontent@journalsentinel.com
Posted: Sept. 27, 2005

With gas prices soaring, and sales of hybrid vehicles expected to double this year, Johnson Controls is moving to cash in on the battery-assisted car boom with a new $4 million laboratory.

The company today will unveil the lab that will be used as a proving ground for next-generation hybrid batteries, a potential source of big business in the years ahead.

The center of activity is three small rooms tucked inside its Battery Technology Center, adjacent to Johnson's corporate headquarters in Glendale.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Stem-cell firm gets big boost

Stem-cell firm gets big boost
00:00 am 9/27/05
JUDY NEWMAN jdnewman@madison.com

Cellular Dynamics International - the young company founded by UW-Madison stem- cell research pioneer Jamie Thomson and his partners - is getting a $2 million jump-start from the state.

Using the announcement Monday as both a political statement and an economic growth message, Gov. Jim Doyle said the state is providing a $1 million grant and a $1 million loan to the Madison company. Coupled with $4 million in private investment, Cellular Dynamics plans to use the technology to screen for drugs for heart patients, starting as soon as early 2006.


Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Tech advancements lead to steady increase in IP suits

Tech advancements lead to steady increase in IP suits
Jennifer LeClaire
Special to the Journal

From Roche Diagnostics' settlement with Promega over its biotechnology patent to Microsoft Corp.'s periodic multimillion-dollar payouts for alleged patent infringement, it's difficult to read the business news pages without running into headlines about intellectual property lawsuits.

But the evidence for the rise of IP-related suits is more than anecdotal. The number of these cases, which includes copyrights, trademarks and patents, has increased 7.3 percent from 2000 to 2004 nationally, according to the Administrative Offices of the U.S. Courts.

Specifically, there were 8,738 IP-related lawsuits in 2000 compared to 9,590 in 2004.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Biotech Patent Cases May Tank

Biotech Patent Cases May Tank
In a closely watched case, court applies 'substantial, specific' utility standard

Pamela A. MacLean
The National Law Journal
09-23-2005

More than 100 biotech patent applications -- part of a land rush to protect bits of identifiable genetic markers -- will most likely be thrown out as inventions lacking practical use, as a result of a recent decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.

The Monsanto Co. case, closely watched by the biotechnology industry, is the court's first application of the patent protection standard of "substantial and specific" utility to nucleotide sequences known as expressed sequence tags, or ESTs -- a component of DNA.

"This was the big policy decision that everyone was waiting for," said George C. Yu, litigation attorney for Affymetrix Inc., a leading provider of gene array technology in Emeryville, Calif. The company weighed in as one of several amicus participants supporting the position adopted by the court's recent 2-1 vote in In re Dane K. Fisher and Raghunath V. Lalgudi, No. 04-1465.

Had the patent rights been granted, it "would allow a patent owner to lay claim to enormous development downstream," said Joseph Keyes Jr., a Washington attorney for the Association of American Medical Colleges who supplied amicus arguments.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Physicists Measure Tiny Force That Limits How Far Machines Can Shrink

Physicists Measure Tiny Force That Limits How Far Machines Can Shrink

By Lori Stiles
September 22, 2005

University of Arizona physicists have directly measured how close speeding atoms can come to a surface before the atoms' wavelengths change.

Theirs is a first, fundamental measurement that confirms the idea that the wave of a fast-moving atom shortens and lengthens depending on its distance from a surface, an idea first proposed by pioneering quantum physicists in the late 1920s.

The measurement tells nanotechnologists how small they can make extremely tiny devices before a microscopic force between atoms and surfaces, called van der Waals interaction, becomes a concern. The result is important both for nanotechnology, where the goal is to make devices as small as a few tens of billionths of a meter, and for atom optics, where the goal is to use the wave nature of atoms to make more precise sensors and study quantum mechanics.

UA optical sciences doctoral candidate John D. Perreault and UA assistant professor of physics Alexander D. Cronin report the experiment in the Sept. 23 Physical Review Letters. The paper is online at http://xxx.lanl.gov/PS_cache/physics/pdf/0505/0505160.pdf

Press release.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Researchers Predict Infinite Genomes

Researchers Predict Infinite Genomes

September 22, 2005

Rockville , MD —Ever since the genomics revolution took off, scientists have been busily deciphering vast numbers of genomes. Cataloging. Analyzing. Comparing. Public databases hold 239 complete bacterial genomes alone.

But scientists at The Institute for Genomic Research (TIGR) have come to a startling conclusion. Armed with the powerful tools of comparative genomics and mathematics, TIGR scientists have concluded that researchers might never fully describe some bacteria and viruses—because their genomes are infinite. Sequence one strain of the species, and scientists will find significant new genes. Sequence another strain, and they will find more. And so on, infinitely.


Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

UW-Madison leads state in research spending

UW-Madison leads state in research spending
Projects considered critical catalysts for creating good jobs
By KATHLEEN GALLAGHER
kgallagher@journalsentinel.com
Posted: Sept. 22, 2005

Research spending - the catalyst for creating high-paying knowledge economy jobs - is rising in the state, but the University of Wisconsin continues to be the dominant research school, with 82 cents of every research dollar in the state spent on the Madison campus.

Recently released National Science Foundation figures show UW-Madison retained its distinction as the fourth-biggest research institution in the country, with a jump of nearly 9% to $721.2 million spent on research.

The Medical College of Wisconsin followed with $108.6 million of research spending. All the state's doctoral-granting institutions' combined for a total of $881 million spent on research.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Personalized Medicines Over-Hyped, Report Says

Personalized Medicines Over-Hyped, Report Says

LONDON -- Personalized medicines targeted according to a patient's genetic profile have been over-hyped and their widespread use is still 15 to 20 years away, leading scientists said on Wednesday.

The field, known as pharmacogenetics, has made strides in the battle against certain cancers and shows great promise in improving efficacy, reducing adverse reactions of drugs and limiting medical costs.

However, a report by the Royal Society, an independent academy of leading scientists, said more research into the genetics of complex diseases, DNA testing, international guidelines and investment were needed before targeted therapies would be widely available.

"Personalized medicines show promise but they have undoubtedly been over-hyped," said David Weatherall, who chairs the working group that produced the report.

"This is a long-term goal and it will take many years to come to fruition."

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

US announces global intellectual-property plan

US announces global intellectual-property plan

Anne Broache
CNET News.com
September 22, 2005, 10:35 BST

Intellectual-property infringement is costing US businesses $250bn a year, according to the US government

The Bush administration on Wednesday announced new plans to expand its crackdown on intellectual-property infringement overseas.

During California visits with high-tech and movie industry representatives, Commerce Department secretary Carlos Gutierrez described two new programmes aimed at eroding intellectual property infringement, which the department claims costs US businesses $250bn (£138bn) and 750,000 jobs per year.

"The protection of intellectual property is vital to our economic growth and global competitiveness, and it has major consequences in our ongoing effort to promote security and stability around the world," he said.

One programme would place intellectual property experts on the ground in regions where infringement is considered a concern. There they would work with overseas US businesses and native government officials to advocate improved intellectual-property rights protection, according to a department fact sheet.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Follow-up Article on State Senator: In questions about God, Reynolds trusts

In questions about God, Reynolds trusts
Posted: Sept. 21, 2005
Spivak & Bice

State Sen. Tom Reynolds says he doesn't exactly ask job applicants if they are born-again Christians.

Here is what the West Allis Republican told conservative talk show host Charlie Sykes this week:

"One of the questions I like asking people - and it's not are they born again - but I like asking people, just so I can get an idea of their understanding of their religious views is, if you die today and were standing before the judgment seat of God and God said, 'Why should I let you into heaven?' what would you say?" the senator said, defending himself in response to our Sunday column. "I ask that all the time to people just to get their understanding of how salvation is achieved."

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Adult Human Neural Stem Cells Repair Cord Damage in Mice

Adult human neural stem cell therapy successful in treating spinal cord injury

UCI study shows impact of stem cells on tissue regeneration and points to potential for new treatments

Irvine, Calif., September 19, 2005

Researchers at the UC Irvine Reeve-Irvine Research Center have used adult human neural stem cells to successfully regenerate damaged spinal cord tissue and improve mobility in mice.

The findings point to the promise of using this type of cells for possible therapies to help humans who have spinal cord injuries. Study results appear online in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Early Edition.

In their study, Brian Cummings, Aileen Anderson and colleagues injected adult human neural stem cells into mice with limited mobility due to spinal cord injuries. These transplanted stem cells differentiated into new oligodendrocyte cells that restored myelin around damaged mouse axons. Additionally, transplanted cells differentiated into new neurons that formed synaptic connections with mouse neurons.

Myelin is the biological insulation for nerve fibers that is critical for maintenance of electrical conduction in the central nervous system. When myelin is stripped away through disease or injury, sensory and motor deficiencies result and, in some cases, paralysis can occur. Previous Reeve-Irvine research has shown that transplantation of oligodendrocyte precursors derived from human embryonic stem cells restores mobility in rats.

“We set out to find whether these cells would be able to respond to the injury in an appropriate and beneficial way on their own,” Cummings said. “We were excited to find that the cells responded to the damage by making appropriate new cells that could assist in repair. This study supports the possibility that formation of new myelin and new neurons may contribute to recovery.”

Mice that received human neural stem cells nine days after spinal cord injury showed improvements in walking ability compared to mice that received either no cells or a control transplant of human fibroblast cells (which cannot differentiate into nervous system cells). Further experiments showed behavioral improvements after either moderate or more severe injuries, with the treated mice being able to step using the hind paws and coordinate stepping between paws whereas control mice were uncoordinated.

The cells survived and improved walking ability for at least four months after transplantation. Sixteen weeks after transplantation, the engrafted human cells were killed using diphtheria toxin (which is only toxic to the human cells, not the mouse). This procedure abolished the improvements in walking, suggesting that the human neural stem cells were the vital catalysts for the maintained mobility.

This study differs from previous work using human embryonic stem cells in spinal cord injury because the human neural stem cells were not coaxed into becoming specific cell types before transplantation.

Continue reading "Adult Human Neural Stem Cells Repair Cord Damage in Mice" »

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Patent Reform Criticism

In patent reform debate, high-tech firms lose ground to drug industry
Friday, September 16, 2005

By Erica Werner, The Associated Press

WASHINGTON -- Opposition from drug and biotech companies has forced lawmakers to water down a bill cracking down on the so-called patent trolls who are bedeviling the high-tech industry.

Those are people who get patents for products they never plan to make, just so they can sue for infringement if a company does turn out something similar.

But the resulting draft legislation drew criticism from a top Democrat at a hearing Thursday, and a warning from a high-tech group that said lawmakers could be risking the industry's support.

"We have a bill which to my way of thinking has stripped out very significant reforms," Rep. Howard Berman, D-Calif., said at a hearing of the House Judiciary Committee's subcommittee on intellectual property.

"The support of our industry for this legislation should not be taken for granted," Emery Simon, an attorney for the Business Software Alliance, told Rep. Lamar Smith, R-Texas, the chairman of the subcommittee.

Drug companies don't have the high-tech industry's problem with patent trolls. Instead, they depend heavily on patents -- and the ability to sue to enforce them -- to safeguard their intellectual property and raise money while they develop new products.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Critics say Wisconsin's proposed cloning ban muddles issues

Critics say Wisconsin's proposed cloning ban muddles issues

BY PETER GORNER

Chicago Tribune

CHICAGO - (KRT) - The Wisconsin legislature is weighing a cloning ban that critics charge would undermine embryonic stem cell research in the place where it was discovered and threaten the state's huge biotechnology infrastructure.

The bill, passed 59-38 in the State Assembly and awaiting a vote by the full Senate during the fall session that starts Tuesday, would prohibit reproductive cloning, or creating a baby that is a genetic carbon copy of an individual - a concept few scientists support.

But it also outlaws a procedure called therapeutic cloning, which involves using lab techniques to create early embryos containing a trait scientists want to study. They do this to procure a supply of embryonic stem cells that researchers say will advance the understanding of genetic diseases and someday allow development of replacement cells for people plagued by incurable illness.

Supporters of the bill say destruction of human embryos is an inherent part of any kind of cloning and there is no scientifically accepted way of getting around that.

The success of the bill so far alarms researchers and ethicists who say it will only confuse the public about the issues involved. And if it becomes law, they say, Wisconsin will be cutting off its nose to spite its face.

"The assembly is simply preying on fears about cloning to oppose stem cell research using cloning," said Arthur Caplan, chairman of the medical ethics department and director of the Center for Bioethics at the University of Pennsylvania.

Democratic Gov. Jim Doyle has agreed, saying the bill really is an attempt to stop stem cell research and is "not going to happen." If it clears the Senate, Doyle has said, he will veto it.

On the other hand, the bill's sponsor remains firm in his determination to get it passed.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

UW-Madison tops in research

WisBusiness: Magazine ranks UW-Madison tops in research
9/16/2005

By Brian E. Clark
WisBusiness.com

UW-Madison is the top research university in the United States, according to the September issue of Washington Monthly.

The campus was 12th overall among national universities in the magazine’s annual college guide. But UW-Madison's research ranking topped the likes of MIT, Stanford and UCLA, Michigan.

According to the article, UW-Madison earned its honor based on two measurements: the total amount of an institution’s annual research spending, and the number of Ph.Ds awarded by the university in the sciences and engineering.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Biotech firms seeking cash at regional fair

Biotech firms seeking cash at regional fair
00:00 am 9/18/05
JUDY NEWMAN jdnewman@madison.com

In a few years, people who get kidney transplants may be able to use a simple test at home to periodically check to see if the new kidney is still in good working order.

But first, Renovar, the Madison company planning to develop that test, will have to raise enough money to complete work on products that will eventually pave the way for the home test kit.

And finding investors is no easy task for biotechnology companies in the Madison area.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Wisconsin State Senator Reynolds exhibits signs of quirkiness

Reynolds exhibits signs of quirkiness
Posted: Sept. 17, 2005
Spivak & Bice

TomReynolds is not your typical state senator.

He's so out there, in fact, that Republican Party bosses are worried that Reynolds' peculiarities could cost them a Senate seat the party has held since 1993.

And they haven't even heard some of the best stories.

When the freshman from West Allis went on a family vacation to Whitefish Dunes State Park in Door County a couple of years ago, he was angered by a sign that said the sand dunes were off-limits. Reynolds was so perturbed by what he viewed as an assault on his personal liberty that when he got back from the Door County getaway, he put his taxpayer-paid Senate staff on the case.

Yep, you read it right - a state senator told his top aide to rip off a sign.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Dow Chemical wins patent for insect-resistant crops

Dow Chemical wins patent for insect-resistant crops

Midland, Mich. (Bloomberg) -- Dow Chemical Co., the largest U.S. chemical maker, won a U.S. patent for insect- resistant plants and said it plans to seek licensing agreements from rivals selling products that use the same technology.

The U.S. Patent Office granted "broad and exclusive" patent rights for plants containing genes from the bacteria Bt, or Bacillus thuringiensis, Dow said Tuesday in a statement. Dow AgroSciences sells Bt-modified corn co-developed with DuPont Co.'s Pioneer unit under the Herculex brand and Bt-engineered cotton under the WideStrike name.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Roche settles with Promega over PCR litigation

Roche settles with Promega over PCR litigation

By Wai Lang Chu

12/09/2005 - Roche Diagnostics has announced it has settled all litigation in the United States, Europe and Australia, with Promega concerning Polymerase Chain Reaction Technology (PCR), ending a decade of litigation between the two companies.

Roche did not disclose the terms of the settlement, but commented that existing litigation provisions in its financial statements covered the amount, ruling out any additional impact on its net income.
Roche's decision to settle this long running saga is in contrast to a similar case involving the company and MJ Research. In April 2005, the court increased damages awarded to Applera and Roche to approximately $35 million (€28 million), after a jury agreed that MJ Research had wilfully infringed patents relating to PCR owned by Applera and Roche Molecular Systems (Roche).

The settlement between the two companies stems from an original lawsuit initiated by Roche Diagnostics back in 1992. Over the past 15 years, legal challenge brought in the US by Promega, which strove to overturn patents on technology used in gene amplification using polymerase chain reaction (PCR), were unsuccessful.


Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Study: Nanotech to boom

Study: Nanotech to boom
00:00 am 9/14/05
JASON STEIN jstein@madison.com

The U.S. market for nanotech tools - products for working at small scales made by several local companies - will double over the next five years, a new study found.

As part of the report released Tuesday, New York consulting firm Lux Research interviewed executives at 21 high-tech tool makers around the country, including microscope maker Imago Scientific Instruments in Madison. Sales of tools ranging from microscopes to software will grow from $580 million last year to a projected $1.1 billion in 2010, according to the study.

Though the market for nanotech inspection tools and microscopes is not expected to grow quickly, Imago's 3-D microscope could be an exception, report co-author Vahe Mamikunian said.

"What we found is that there was a lot of excitement about the three- dimensional inspection probes," Mamikunian said of his interviews with 49 potential buyers at corporate and academic labs nationally. "They were really excited about Imago and what they were capable of doing."

Nanotechnology is the science of creating new structures at scales that can be 1/70,000th the width of a human hair.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Patent bill would make sweeping changes

Patent bill would make sweeping changes
By Declan McCullagh
Staff Writer, CNET News.com
September 13, 2005 4:00 AM PT

When Gordon Gould was a graduate student at Columbia University in 1957, he sketched out the concept of a concentrated beam of light amplified in a gas-filled chamber and coined the term "laser" to describe it.

But Gould waited to seek a patent on his discovery, believing incorrectly that a working prototype was necessary. Eventually, two other researchers were awarded the basic patents instead.

After a decades-long legal tussle, Gould finally reveled in victory when a federal court ruled that the patent application it had approved did not anticipate the common uses of lasers. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office then granted Gould lucrative rights to the invention, in part because as a graduate student he had his original research notebooks date-stamped and notarized.

The legal standard that was applied awards patents to the person who invented a concept first, and it has long been a unique feature of the U.S. patent system. This year, however, Congress is about to consider a controversial proposal from Rep. Lamar Smith, a Texas Republican, that would grant a patent to the first person to submit the paperwork --a standard that's common outside the United States.


Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Appeals court upholds decision invalidating inventor's key patents

Appeals court upholds decision invalidating inventor's key patents
By Adam Goldman, Associated Press Writer | September 12, 2005

LAS VEGAS --A federal appeals court has upheld a ruling that invalidated key patents -- for the bar code scanner and industrial robotic vision -- of the late Jerome Lemelson, one of America's most prolific and controversial inventors.

The court affirmed that 14 of Lemelson's critical patents were unenforceable in a case brought by companies including Cognex Corp., the world's largest maker of machine vision, and Symbol Technologies Inc., which makes bar code scanners.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, in Friday's ruling, backed U.S. District Judge Philip Pro's finding that the amount of time it took for Lemelson's patents to issue was unreasonable and the delay unexplained.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Bioethics Council Head to Step Down

Bioethics Council Head to Step Down

By Rick Weiss
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, September 9, 2005; Page A06

Leon R. Kass, the University of Chicago medical ethicist who four years ago today was named by President Bush to head the newly created President's Council on Bioethics, will step down as chairman Oct. 1, the White House announced late Wednesday.

Kass, who led the 18-member group of philosophers, scientists, theologians and legal scholars as it plumbed the turbulent debates over human cloning, embryonic stem cell research, the creation of animal-human hybrids and other topics raised by rapid advances in biotechnology, asked to be relieved of the chairmanship, council spokeswoman Diane Gianelli said.

"He loved the job" and will continue to serve as a member of the council, Gianelli said, but he had been feeling increasingly burdened by the amount of work involved in being chairman.

The White House said it had selected as the new chairman Edmund Pellegrino, 85, a professor emeritus of medicine and medical ethics at Georgetown University Medical Center and a former president of Catholic University. He will join the council in October.


Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Researchers discover key to embryonic stem-cell potential

Researchers discover key to embryonic stem-cell potential
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (September 8, 2005) - What exactly makes a stem cell a stem cell? The question may seem simplistic, but while we know a great deal of what stem cells can do, we don't yet understand the molecular processes that afford them such unique attributes.

Now, researchers at Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research working with human embryonic stem cells have uncovered the process responsible for the single-most tantalizing characteristic of these cells: their ability to become just about any type of cell in the body, a trait known as pluripotency.

"This is precisely what makes these stem cells so interesting from a therapeutic perspective," says Whitehead Member Richard Young, senior author on the paper which will be published September 8 in the early online edition of the jourl Cell. "They are wired so they can become almost any part of the body. We've uncovered a key part of the wiring diagram for these cells and can now see how this is accomplished."

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Wisconsin Company Sajan Expands in Medical Device Market

Sajan’s medical device clientele surges

SEPTEMBER 7, 2005 — Sajan, a leader in global communication management technology and translation services, is rapidly expanding its reach into the medical device market.

From the initial release of GCMS 2005 earlier this year, Sajan increased the number of med device clients using its translation services and technology by 50%. Sajan’s vice president of sales, Mike Morin, attributes the increase to Sajan’s expertise in translation technology while listening to the voice of the customer. “This is a prime example of how Sajan excels at meeting the needs of our customers through services and technology.”

Continue reading "Wisconsin Company Sajan Expands in Medical Device Market" »

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Jury awards $5.3 million to Third Wave

Jury awards $5.3 million to Third Wave

Staff/news services
September 7, 2005

A federal jury has awarded $5.3 million to Third Wave Technologies Inc. in a patent infringement case that ended last week. The court still must make a final judgment.

The Madison-based maker of genetic diagnostic tools said it will seek additional damages, given the willful infringement verdict against California-based Stratagene Corp.

The jury found that the California firm violated two patents covering Third Wave's Invader product, the methods and chemistry of which are protected by some 45 patents, with more than 100 additional patents pending.

Stratagene said it would appeal the decision in federal court. It said sales of the products covered under the patents in question amounted to less than $400,000.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Mutations Observed in Embryonic Stem Cells

Embryonic stem cells appear to change as they replicate
Study casts doubt on long-term safety of existing lines
By SUSANNE QUICK
squick@journalsentinel.com
Posted: Sept. 4, 2005
One of the central tenets of stem cell biology has been shaken.

An international team of researchers has discovered that human embryonic stem cells do not indefinitely self-renew without modification. Instead, they appear to accumulate changes in their genetic material over time.

This finding means that existing lines may be unsuitable for human therapeutic purposes, and it may also undermine their value in basic research. The research is described in the Sept. 4 online edition of Nature Genetics.

"This is an extremely important and troublesome discovery," said Robert Lanza, a stem cell biologist with Advanced Cell Technology, a biotech company in Worcester, Mass., who was not involved in the research. He added that it "raises some serious questions about the lines that are available."

"This is just the first step," said Aravinda Chakravarti, a geneticist at Johns Hopkins University and one of the research team's leaders. "While this is a snapshot of the genomic changes that can happen, it's certainly not everything going on. We still need comprehensive analyses of the changes and what they mean for the functions of embryonic stem cells."

But he did say the mutations he and his colleagues from the United States, Singapore, Canada and Sweden observed were pretty major.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.

Third Wave wins patent dispute

Third Wave wins patent dispute
Federal jury finds California company guilty of infringement
By KATHLEEN GALLAGHER
kgallagher@journalsentinel.com
Posted: Sept. 1, 2005

A federal jury has found a La Jolla, Calif., company guilty of infringing on two patents belonging to Third Wave Technologies Inc. in Madison, the companies said Thursday.

The jury is now hearing arguments about damages. Third Wave is seeking a permanent injunction preventing the sale of certain products from Stratagene Corp., as well as monetary damages.

"This decision demonstrates the validity of Third Wave's intellectual property and establishes the technology as one of the only alternatives to what currently is the gold standard for genetic analysis," said Adam Chazan, senior life sciences and clinical diagnostics analyst at Pacific Growth Equities in San Francisco. Chazan covers Third Wave and Stratagene.

Full story.

Please visit our sponsor Gehrke & Associates, SC to learn more about how to enhance and defend your intellectual property.  Thank you.