SAN DIEGO, Dec. 22 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Nanogen, Inc. (Nasdaq: NGEN), developer of advanced diagnostic products, announced today that its subsidiary Epoch Biosciences has been issued two patents by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for technologies related to genetic analysis. The new patents further bolster Nanogen's intellectual property position in genetic analysis technologies. U.S. Patent 6,972,339 "Compounds and Methods for Fluorescent Labeling," covers technologies that allow the high-throughput synthesis of fluorescently labeled nucleic acid probes and primers. The second, U.S. Patent No. 6,972,328, "Non-aggregating Non-quenching Oligomers Comprising Nucleotide Analogs, Method of Synthesis and Use Thereof" relates to the synthesis and use of pyrazoloprimidine and 7-deazapurine nucleosides as replacements for the natural guanosine nucleoside in diagnostic nucleic acid oligomers. "Our extensive investment in the development of genetic analysis technologies is paying off with the building of a strong IP portfolio in real-time PCR, mirroring our strong position in electronic microarrays," noted Howard C. Birndorf, chairman and chief executive officer of Nanogen. "As molecular diagnostics gains further market penetration, these underlying technologies position Nanogen to address labs' needs with differentiated advanced diagnostic products." The '339 patent describes novel fluorescent dyes and methods of preparation of fluorescently labeled biological probes including the high-throughput manufacturing of nucleic acid probes and primers that are used in Nanogen's MGB Alert(TM) and MGB Eclipse(R) assay formats. The manufacturing methods covered by the '339 patent may be applicable to other genomic analysis formats used in competitors' DNA sequencing, genotyping and gene expression analysis assays. By manufacturing nucleic acid probes and primers with such labor-saving techniques, Nanogen can reduce costs and deliver more economical products to the company's customers. The '328 patent relates to the use of pyrazolopyrimidine and 7-deazapurine nucleosides as replacements for the natural guanosine (G) nucleoside in nucleic acid probes. PCR-based assays that target sequences rich in G residues can be difficult or impossible to perform under normal conditions because of the formation of self-aggregates. In addition, G residues can cause an undesirable fluorescence quenching effect in probe-based PCR chemistries. The use of Nanogen's proprietary pyrazolopyrimidines can resolve these performance issues and result in improved molecular diagnostic reagents. About Nanogen, Inc. Nanogen's advanced technologies provide researchers, clinicians and physicians worldwide with improved methods and tools to predict, diagnose, and ultimately help treat disease. The company's products include real-time PCR reagents, the NanoChip(R) electronic microarray platform and a line of reagents useful in rapid diagnostic tests. Nanogen's ten years of pioneering research involving nanotechnology holds the promise of miniaturization and continues to be supported for its potential for diagnostic and biowarfare applications. For additional information please visit Nanogen's website at www.nanogen.com. Nanogen Forward-Looking Statement This press release contains forward-looking statements that are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those set forth in the forward-looking statements, including whether patents owned or licensed by Nanogen will be developed into products, whether the patents owned by Nanogen offer any protection against competitors with competing technologies, whether products under development can be successfully developed and commercialized, whether results reported by our customers or partners can be identically replicated, and other risks and uncertainties discussed under the caption "Factors That May Affect Results" and elsewhere in Nanogen's Form 10-K or Form 10-Q most recently filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. These forward-looking statements speak only as of the date hereof. Nanogen disclaims any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements.
SOURCE Nanogen, Inc.