BioWorld Today here continues its occasional listing of government agencies seeking industrial licensees to commercialize their biotechnology-related research and development inventions. Commercialization rights are offered by the National Institutes of Health, Office of Technology Transfer (OTT). Announcements of the following two CRADA (Cooperative Research and Development Agreement) partnerships (see listings under the National Cancer Institute and the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases) and 12 licensing opportunities have been submitted recently to the Federal Register.

To obtain CRADA or licensing information and copies of the U.S. patent issuances or applications listed below, contact the OTT licensing specialists indicated.


Chemokine Variants

Truncated RANTES (regulated on activation, normal T cell expressed and secreted) having substitutions in two amino acid residues is a substrate of CD26, a leukocyte activation marker that possesses dipeptidyl peptidase IV activity. This RANTES variant retains the ability to stimulate CCR5 receptors and inhibit the cytopathic effects of HIV-1. These materials can be used to diagnose and treat individuals infected with HIV or having a chemokine-associated disorder.

Application: 60/067,033

Issued: 12/1/97

Inventors: Oravecz, T., et al.

Contact: Carol Salata, (301) 496-7735, ext. 232

DNA Fingerprinting Using Frequent Insertion Site Polymorphisms

Long interspersed sequences contribute to genetic variation among individuals. By detecting these insertion sites in an individual, both DNA fingerprint and population genetic variation information can be obtained.

Application: 60/060,353

Issued: 9/29/97

Inventors: Swergold, G., et al.

Contact: Charles Maynard, (301) 496-7735, ext. 243


Constitutive Transport Elements Control Retroviral Infectivity

The viral constitutive transport element (CTE) interacts with host factors causing the transport of unspliced RNAs from the nucleus to the cytoplasm. By introducing the CTE from murine leukemia virus into avian sarcoma/leukosis virus (ASLV), the resulting ASLV vector can extend its host range infectivity to mammalian cells. Interchanging CTEs from different viruses can lead to the development of broader-spectrum gene therapy vectors.

Application: 60/094,535

Filed: 7/29/98

Inventors: Ferris, A.L., et al.

Contact: Richard Rodriguez, (301) 496-7056, ext. 287

CD97 Antagonists As Anti-Inflammatory Agents

CD97 is upregulated upon T-cell activation and is involved in the onset and maintenance of inflammation and angiogenesis. By using a soluble version of the alpha subunit, antagonists can be developed. These antagonists can inhibit the angiogenesis that is associated with chronic inflammation.

Application: PCT/US97/19772

Filed: 10/24/97

Inventor: Kelly, K.

Contact: Charles Maynard, (301) 496-7735, ext. 243

Infectious Papillomavirus Pseudoviral Particles

Pseudoviral particles consisting of papillomavirus capsids can encapsulate heterologous DNA if sequences containing the viral E2 protein binding site are also included. These viral vectors can be used to replace a defective gene for gene therapy or encode a useful antigen for immunization.

Application: PCT/US97/12115

Filed: 7/14/97

Inventors: Lowy, D.R., et al.

Contact: Robert Benson, (301) 496-7056, ext. 267

Libraries Of Binding Proteins

Combinatorial libraries of genes encoding binding proteins derived from the CDRI or CDRIII hypervariable regions of the immunoglobulin heavy chain have been engineered. This library is a collection of diverse gene sequences that encode proteins that can be expressed on phage surfaces where binding proteins for specific biomolecules can be selected.

U.S. Patent: 5,702,892

Issued: 12/30/97

Inventor: Mulligan-Kehoe, M.J.

Contact: Marlene Shinn, (301) 496-7056, ext. 285

Amino Acid Sequencing Peptides

Peptides for use as an internal standard in amino acid sequencing reactions contain at least two different unnatural amino acid residues, such as ornithine, norvaline, norleucine and alpha-aminobutyric acid. The reactant derivatives of these residues have distinct chromatographic retention times that allow their quantification without interference with the sequence analysis of the sample unknown.

U.S. Patent: 5,589,397

Issued: 10/30/96

Inventors: Parmelee, D.C., et al.

Contact: Manja Blazer, (301) 496-7056, ext. 224

Fusion Immunotoxin For Refractory Leukemias

A recombinant immunotoxin that targets refractory leukemias, Hodgkin's disease and other hematologic malignancies is undergoing animal testing. This immunotoxin is a single-chain Fv form of the anti-CD25 antibody, which binds to the alpha subunit of the interleukin-2 receptor, fused to a mutant Pseudomonas exotoxin A. Clinical tests on 32 patients who received a total of 53 cycles of treatment showed that seven patients had some response to refractory hematologic cancers.

The NCI seeks partners to further evaluate and develop the clinical and commercial potential of this immunotoxin for the treatment of mesotheliomas. CRADA proposals should be received on or before 90 days after publication of this notice in the Federal Register for priority consideration. However, CRADA proposals submitted thereafter may be considered if a suitable collaborator has not been selected.

U.S. Patent: 4,892,827

Issued: 1/9/90

Inventors: Pastan, I.H., et al.

Contact: John Dixon, (301) 496-7056, ext. 206


Inhibition Of Prion Protein Transmissibility

Porphyrins and phthalocyanines specifically inhibit the conversion of protease-sensitive prion proteins into the abnormal protease-resistant forms without apparent cytotoxic side effects. These inhibitors may be useful therapeutics against the transmission of spongiform encephalopathies.

OTT Reference: 60/096,148

Filed: 8/11/98

Inventors: Caughey, W., et al.

Contact: George Keller, (301) 496-7735, ext. 246

Fluorescent Reporter For IL-2 Gene Activation

Transgenic mice are constructed with their interleukin-1 structural gene replaced by a cDNA encoding green fluorescence protein. Using these mice, researchers can monitor the early stages of T-cell activation and screen for immunomodulators.

OTT Reference: E-279-98/0

Inventors: Gu, H., et al.

Contact: Jaconda Wagner, (301) 496-7735, ext. 284

Hepatitis C Virus Genomes

Infectious hepatitis C viral genomes of genotypes 1a and 1b have been cloned. These sequences and their encoded proteins can be used to develop vaccines and diagnostic assays and to identify antiviral agents.

Application: 09/014,416

Filed: 1/27/98

Inventors: Yanagi, M., et al.

Contact: George Keller, (301) 496-7735, ext. 246


IL-1 Polymorphisms And Early-Onset Periodontitis

Genetic polymorphisms in the interleukin-1-alpha and 1-beta genes are associated with early-onset periodontitis. Diagnostic tests identifying the presence of these polymorphisms can be used to target early clinical intervention in this disease.

Application: 09/035,220

Filed: 3/5/97

Inventors: Diehl, S.R., et al.

Contact: Dennis Penn, (301) 496-7056, ext. 211


Hepatitis C Vaccine

A hepatitis C vaccine is under development at the NIDDK that is based upon the synthesis, large-scale production and purification of non-infectious hepatitis C-like particles containing viral structural proteins. This vaccine will be evaluated in a series of preclinical studies in animals as well as in initial safety tests in humans.

The NIDDK seeks partners to further evaluate and develop the clinical and commercial potential of this vaccine.

Only written CRADA capability statements received by the NIDDK on or before March 1, 1999, will be considered. There is no deadline by which licensing applications must be received. Those submitting a CRADA proposal should be aware that it may be necessary to secure a license to the related patent rights in order to commercialize products resulting from the CRADA.

OTT Reference: E-009-97/0

Filed: 11/8/96

Inventors: Liang, T.J., et al.

Contact: Carol Salata, (301) 496-7057, ext. 232


Cannabinoids As Neuroprotectants

Cannabidiol is a neuroprotectant that lacks associated psychoactive qualities. This substance is an antioxidant that can effectively penetrate the blood-brain barrier. Cannabidiol can protect neurons from both glutamate- and free radical-induced toxicity, thus making it a possible alternative therapeutic for treating ischemia or physical trauma.

OTT Reference: E-287-97/1

Filed: 8/10/98

Inventors: Hampson, A., et al.

Contact: Stephen Finley, (301) 496-7735, ext. 215

-- Compiled By Chester Bisbee