Nanogen, Inc announced today that it was issued U.S. Patent No. 6,682,936, "Addressable Biologic Electrode Array," by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The '936 patent relates to electrode-based array devices and methods of operation in which individual electrodes contained within the array can be selectively addressed or manipulated. The technology enables high-density electrode arrays to be produced and has applications for the hybridization as well as combinatorial synthesis and self-assembly of biological molecules, such as nucleic acids and peptides. The technology also enables the production of smaller and more compact arrays, while at the same time minimizing the utilization of off-chip control circuitry, even for large numbers of electrodes.
The technology described in the patent relates to Nanogen's advanced chip designs, which can be used for biological applications and also for nanofabrication applications, such as those described in several other Nanogen patents including the Company's recently issued U.S. Patent No. 6,652,808. With the addition of the '936 patent, Nanogen now has 57 issued patents in the United States.
"Customers using biomedical diagnostic applications -- and ultimately the patients they serve -- will require increasingly sophisticated capabilities at reasonable cost," said Howard Birndorf, Nanogen chairman and chief executive officer. "Application of the technology described in this patent allows for continually increasing array densities and capabilities, which simultaneously would reduce both array cost and instrument size."
"One of the challenges in producing biologic arrays of increasing density is the integration of electronic control circuitry with each electrode on the array. The new patent describes a semiconductor-based switching technology that helps solve these scaling issues," said Dr. Michael J. Heller, co-founder of Nanogen, and currently a professor in the Departments of Bioengineering and Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of California, San Diego.