BioTech Circle News - January 2008

March 17 2008

BioFables Updates

As we noted last month, we're writing a series of brief BioFables...imaginative stories that incorporate scientific topics and facts while blending in some flights of fancy. You can now read about the first bio-exploits of young twins Mallory and Melody in Part 1 and Part 2 of Exploring Extremophiles, where you'll meet Dr. Ethyl A. Shun, an extremophile expert. Dr. Ethyl and other players will appear in a variety of bio journeys as Mal (Bioloney) and Mel Maloney grow toward maturity.

Beacon on Biotechpreneurs Update

About 15 years ago, a friend was part of a medical team that was trying to raise money to test a nutrient formulation coupled with other courses of action that they had good reason to believe would alleviate the painful symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis. Anecdotal evidence pointed to relief from the painful joint inflammation that arthritis sufferers experience. There are 46 million people with arthritis in the U.S. alone, a huge number.

Unfortunately, the team was unable to raise the funds the necessary clinical studies despite years of effort and considerable financial hardship on the families involved. I firmly believe that if they were able to get their story out to a broad enough audience, millions of people afflicted with arthritis would have been able to enjoy a much higher quality of life with significantly reduced pain and increased mobility.

Beacon on Biotechpreneurs was born from this experience, an experience that we hope to help prevent for promising technologies that might not otherwise be discovered. How? By allowing potential business partners a glimpse of the person (or people) responsible for driving the biotech forward. Certainly business plans, technical papers and articles, patents and other material create a good profile of a technology. With Beacon for Biotechpreneurs, we'd like to support the PERSONAL side of the technology equation with personal profiles of biotech scientists and managers from around the world to reflect the diversity of our visitors who come from more than 60 countries each month and the 50 countries with gene-related patents issued by the US Patent Office that we've cited in our monthly reports. The profiles are completely free.

Who are these hidden scientists and managers who would appreciate a broader exposure for their technology? You probably know several. Or perhaps you are a  biotechpreneur yourself. To get an idea of what a profile might look like, please see a brief example.

Of course, every profile will have a unique set of featured elements and details, and the profiles will vary in length. Click on the link below for some topic suggestions. One possibility is for the biotechpreneur or interviewer to fill it out. Alternatively, we can conduct a Skype interview if you also have Skype.

Please contact me if you have any questions at:

January Biotech Report

With this January 2008 update, you have access to 3,367 Web articles, 3,384 gene-related patents and 7,505 gene-related patent applications...14,256 biotech citations in all.

The PDF versions of our selected January 2008 Web articles and the gene-related patents and patent applications issued and posted by the US Patent Office in January will be available by February 11 through the links at our home page.

Alternatively, you can quickly review the article titles with links to the abstracts and full articles, and gene-related patenting activity sorted by country by clicking on "Archives" and then the underlined text (rather than the PDF symbol).

Web articles

As is often the case, this January we found two articles reflecting two opposing perspectives on the sharing of technical data:

Mandatory Open Access

Researchers supported by the National Institutes of Health will be required to submit all resulting peer-reviewed articles to the agency for posting on its publicly accessible database, PubMed Central, within 12 months of publication.

Cancer Data? Sorry, Can't Have It

Reports that most scientists doing research on how best to help those in pain, or at risk of death, want to keep their data a secret, citing patient privacy (easily solved by changing names to numbers), the difficulty of putting together the data, etc.

The New York Times article is free, but they require you to log in before you can read the article.

Please see the remaining 67 articles when they are posted by February 11 at our home page.
Gene-Related Patents/Patent Applications

Cuba, Finland, Italy, Malaysia, Poland, Taiwan and Thailand each received one gene-related patent each of the 67 that were granted by the U.S. Patent Office in January, 2008. It is a first for Poland and Thailand since we've been tracking this category.

In January, 117 Gene-related patent applications were posted by the U.S. Patent Office, represented by 18 countries, including South Africa...the first ever that we've tracked in this category.

Review the titles, categories, assignees, country of origin of all 234 gene-related patents and patent applications posted by the U.S. Patent Office this month by clicking on the appropriate title in the left column of our home page. You will find URLs to locate the full text and diagrams of all cited documents at the top of the respective PDF files.


We hope you find these brief updates helpful. Please feel free to drop me an e-mail anytime with suggests and comments.


Joanne F. Gucwa, Editor

BioTech Circle News