Aegera Therapeutics Inc., of Montreal, said it received four additional patents on and around the inhibitors of apoptosis gene family. One covers the use of IAPs for diagnosis and antisense treatments, and a second describes the utility of the testicular inhibitor of apoptosis. The third patent covers the XIAP antagonist XAF1, and the fourth patent shows that mutations of the neuronal apoptosis inhibitor protein are involved in spinal muscular atrophy. Aegera said it has 13 issued U.S. patents covering five of the eight known IAPs.

Applied Genetic Technologies Corp., of Alachua, Fla., and the University of Florida in Gainesville, received U.S. Patent No. 6,461,606 for the method of treating alpha-one antitrypsin deficiency, a form of early onset emphysema, with adeno-associated virus as a gene delivery vehicle.

Ariad Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Cambridge, Mass., was issued a U.S. patent covering intramuscular administration of therapeutic genes controlled by its cell-signaling regulation technology - the product concept being used in Ariad's erythropoietin (EPO) anemia product candidate. A dormant form of the EPO gene is injected into muscle at the onset of treatment, followed by oral administration of Ariad's small-molecule-drug, AP22594, once or twice a month, to increase circulating levels of EPO and red blood cells directly in proportion to the amount of AP22594 administered.