* Alexion Pharmaceuticals Inc., of New Haven, Conn., received patent No. 5,627,264, covering both the nucleic acid and protein compositions of novel chimeric bifunctional human complement inhibitors used to genetically engineer mammalian cells, tissues and organs for xenotransplantation.
* Amgen Inc., of Thousand Oaks, Calif., received patent No. 5,618,698, protecting processes related to the manufacture of erythropoietin (EPO) products. Amgen markets EPO in the U.S. as Epogen (Epoetin alpha) for the treatment of anemia associated with chronic renal failure.
* Biomira Inc., of Edmonton, Canada, received a notice of allowance for a patent related to its lead drug, Theratope cancer vaccine. The patent covers a method of enhancing cellular immunity by administering a synthetic conjugate of a carbohydrate epitope and an antigenic carrier to a patient, so as to result in a carbohydrate epitope-specific cellular immune response.
* BioTransplant Inc., of Charlestown, Mass., received a notice of allowance for a patent covering an integral part of the company's XenoMune xenotransplantation system. The allowed patent relates to a method of inducing tolerance in primates and humans to transplanted porcine organs.
* Celtrix Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Santa Clara, Calif., received two patents, No. 5,563,046 and No. 5,624,805, related to the production and use of SomatoKine, the company's novel IGF-BP3 complex.
* Connetics Corp., of Palo Alto, Calif., received patent covering T-cell receptor vaccine technology, a selective modulator of the body's immune system that could potentially treat autoimmune diseases.
* Cypros Pharmaceutical Corp., of Carlsbad, Calif. received a notice of allowance for a patent covering the use of aminoglycosides * already in use as antibiotics * as neuroprotective agents.
* Ericomp Inc., of San Diego, received a notice of allowance for a patent protecting magnetizable labels that attach themselves to target substances. The patent applies to use of the method for polynucleotide sequencing and amplification.
* Genentech Inc., of South San Francisco, received patent Nos. 5,618,788 and 5,618,789: the former is for methods of treating hemophiliacs with recombinant human Factor VIII, and the latter for a recombinant human Factor VIII as a pharmaceutical product.
* Gliatech Inc., of Cleveland, received patent No. 5,605,938 for methods and composition claims related to portions of the company's Adcon technology for the inhibition of post-surgical scarring and adhesions. The company's Adcon-L and Adcon-T/N anti-adhesion barrier gels are approved in Europe and under consideration by the FDA.
* Hybridon Inc., of Cambridge, Mass., received patent No. 5,614,622 for the composition of pent-enoyl-protected nucleotides, which facilitate the rapid synthesis of synthetic DNA, and for the production of a variety of DNA analogues. The company expects these products to have broad-based applications in oligonucleotide-based therapeutics, gene sequencing and diagnostics.
* Immtech International Inc., of Evanston, Ill., received a patent protecting a treatment for Giardia lamblia, a parasite that causes severe diarrhea. The patent covers a new class of drugs that bind to minor groves of the DNA of microorganisms, blocking the activity of important growth enzymes.
* Inhale Therapeutic Systems Inc., of Palo Alto, Calif., received patent No. 5,607,915, covering the pulmonary delivery of active fragments of parathyroid hormone, a macromolecule being developed to treat osteoporosis.
* Ixion Biotechnology Inc., of Alachua, Fla., received patent No. 5,604,111 for its method of detecting even very low concentrations of oxalate in biological samples. The techniques could lead to diagnostics and therapeutics for oxalate-related disorders.
* Life Medical Sciences Inc., of Edison, N.J., received a patent for its Cariel Topical Wound Healing Gel, an in situ tissue-culturing product.
* Matrix Pharmaceutical Inc., of Fremont, Calif., received patent No. 5,573,781 for its Anhydrous Delivery Vehicles technology, designed to deliver water-insoluble anticancer drugs directly into tumors.
* Millennium Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Cambridge, Mass., received two patents: No. 5,614,277, covering methods of identifying fungal pathogenicity inhibitors; and No. 5,605,820, covering a process for producing novel fungal strains that produce biologically active metabolites as drug leads.
* Myriad Genetics Inc., of Salt Lake City, received patent No. 5,624,819, which covers MTS1 (multiple tumor suppressor 1) melanoma gene mutations. The patent includes the composition of matter on germline mutations that predispose individuals to melanoma and a method for the identification of individuals with an increased melanoma risk.
* Nanogen Inc., of San Diego, received patent No. 5,605,662, covering its APEX (Active Programmable Electronic Devices for Molecular Biological Analysis and Diagnostics) Technology system, which consists of self-addressable microelectronic devices that can actively carry out and control multiplex reactions in microscopic formats.
* Optex Ophthalmologics Inc., a subsidiary of Raleigh, N.C.-based Atlantic Pharmaceuticals Inc., received a notice of allowance for a patent covering the Catarex cataract removal system, a potentially faster and less invasive method than those employed currently.
* Osiris Therapeutics Inc., of Baltimore, received patent No. 5,591,625, which covers insertion of new genes into mesenchymal stem cells and their use in gene therapy.
* Panax Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd., of New York, received patent No. 5.616,346, covering a phospho-soda tablet designed to be used as a purgative in conjunction with colonoscopy.
* Peptide Therapeutics Group plc, of Cambridge, U.K., received patent No. 5,601,821 for immunoactive peptides and their use in allergy treatment.
* PerSeptive Biosystems Inc., of Framingham, Mass., received two patents covering Delayed Extraction Technology, used to analyze biomolecules in time-of-flight mass spectrometry.
* Procept Inc., of Cambridge, Mass., received patent No. 5,614,559 for the use of PRO 2000 gel, a topical microbicide the company is developing as a chemical barrier to prevent HIV infection and other sexually transmitted diseases. The patent covers claims related to a new method of HIV-infection prevention.
* Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Tarrytown, N.Y., and the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, received patent No. 5,595,904, covering a family of MAP2 protein kinases, which are intracellular enzymes that help regulate cell growth. Hyperexpression of MAP kinase has been linked with human breast cancer.
* Sugen Inc., of Redwood City, Calif., received patent No. 5,618,619 for its proprietary cancer target GRB2, a non-enzymatic protein that interacts with tyrosine phosphorylation sites on tyrosine kinase receptors or other proteins through a domain called the SH2 (src homology 2) domain.
* Theratechnologies Inc., of Montreal, received a notice of allowance for a U.S. patent on a disinfecting solution for its dental care units.
* V.I. Technologies Inc., of Melville, N.Y., received patent No. 5,607,694, covering the combination of fibrin sealant and liposomes for use in accelerating and ameliorating the healing process after various types of surgical and non-surgical procedures. The patent describes the combination of fibrin sealant and liposomes as a vehicle to deliver medications such as anticancer agents.
* Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Cambridge, Mass., received patent No. 5,622,970, covering neurophilins, potential nerve growth stimulators that could be designed to assist the recovery of injured neurons.
* Xoma Corp., of Berkeley, Calif., received patent No. 5,627,153, which covers its pharmaceutical BPI protein products to treat fungal infections. BPI (bactericidal/permeability-increasing protein) is a human host-defense protein that kills bacteria and fungi.