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Immunolobulin G thermal protectants

UCI scientists developed a synthetic affinity agent that functions as a thermal protectant for IgG.

Novel method for detection of O-Sulfonation sites on post-translationally modified proteins

Sulfonation of proteins and carbohydrates plays an important role in signaling, transport, and metabolism in the body. The degree to which a molecule is modified and at what positions dictates how that structure interacts within the body. UCI researchers have developed novel methods of detecting and mapping serine and threonine sulfonation of peptides and proteins.

Sensitive Probe for In Vitro Detection of A-beta Aggregates

The extreme sensitivity of Probe‐Enabled Fluorescence Correlation Spectroscopy (PE‐FCS) can enable significantly improved sensitivity for monitoring the aggregation of amyloidogenic proteins vs. current methods which measure the fluorescence of the amyloid‐binding dye Thioflavin T (ThT) or Thioflavin S (ThS) using bulk fluorescence measurements. A significant limitation of the conventional method is that neither ThT nor ThS fluoresce appreciably over background fluorescence until the size and number of amyloid or amyloid‐like species is quite large. Hence, one cannot detect early formed aggregate intermediates that are implicated as the most active species involved in the pathology of amyloid‐associated diseases, such as Alzheimer’s Disease.

Novel cyanobacteriochromes responsive to light in the far-red to near-infrared region

Researchers at the University of California, Davis have identified new cyanobacteriochromes (CBCRs) that detect and fluoresce in the far-red and near-infrared region of the electromagnetic spectrum.


The development of fluorescent indicators for sensing membrane potential can be a challenge.  Traditional methods to measure membrane potential rely on invasive electrodes, however, voltage imaging with fluorescent probes (VF) is an attractive solution because voltage imaging circumvents problems of low- throughput, low spatial resolution, and high invasiveness. Previously reported VF probes/dyes have proven useful in a number of imaging contexts. However, the design scheme for VF dyes remains elusive, due in part to our incomplete understanding of the biophysical properties influencing voltage sensitivity in our VoltageFluor scaffolds.   UC Berkeley researchers have discovered new VF dyes, which are a small molecule platform for voltage imaging that operates via a photoinduced electron transfer (PeT) quenching mechanism to directly image transmembrane voltage changes.   The dyes further our understanding of the roles that membrane voltage plays, not only in excitable cells, such as neurons and cardiomyocytes, but also in non-excitable cells in the rest of the body.

Stimulus-responsive Polymers

Synthetic polymer constructs are an important tool in modern medical practice, but the lack of control over their activity limits their utility. The ability to combine structural function with localized interaction has proven extremely successful in stents, but polymer technology has not advanced sufficiently to serve a wider range of needs. PLGA polyesters can be degraded by hydrolysis facilitating their widespread use in medicine and biomedical research. Their dependence on slow hydrolysis makes for long degradation times (half-life of one year in vivo) limiting their applicability. While degradation can be sped up by copolymerization with more hydrophilic monomers; degradation is still too slow for triggered release or degradation.

Pyrite Shrink-Wrap Laminate As A Hydroxyl Radical Generator

The invention is a diagnostic technology, as well as a research and development tool. It is a simple, easy to operate, and effective platform for the analysis of pharmaceuticals and biological species. Specifically, this platform generates hydroxyl radicals for oxidative footprinting – a technique commonly employed in protein mapping and analysis. The platform itself is inexpenisve to fabricate, scalable, and requires nothing more than an ordinary pipet to use. In addition, it is highly amenable to scale-up, multiplexing, and automation, and so it holds promise as a high-throughput method for mapping protein structure in support of product development, validation, and regulatory approval in the protein-based therapeutics industry.

New Borylated Heterocycles: Indoles, Isoxazoles, Lactones, and Benzofurans, and the Methods to Make Them (related to UC Case 2013-921)

Boron building blocks play a key role in modern organic chemistry, especially in drug design and materials synthesis. Methods to generate heterocycles and borylated compounds in the same synthetic step are largely unknown; the ability to do both increases efficiency and rapidly builds molecular complexity while providing access to previously unavailable building blocks.

Method For Detecting Protein-Specific Glycosylation

O-GlcNAc modification is a common form of post-translational modification that mediates cellular activity and stem cell programming by modifying transcription factors. Multiple human diseases, including cancer and diabetes, have been linked to aberrant O-GlcNAcylation of specific proteins.Despite the importance of this modification, current methods for detection require advanced instrumentation and expertise as well as arduously enriched or purified samples. The “Glyco-seq” method developed by UC Berkeley researchers is highly sensitive, easy to use, and enables O-GlcNAc detection on proteins of interest in cell lysate. 

Novel 3D Stem Cell Culture Systems

Many disorders result in tissue degeneration, including Parkinson’s disease, heart attacks, and liver failure. One promising approach to treat these disorders is cell replacement therapy, which would implant new cells or tissues to replace those damaged by disease. Cell replacement therapy relies on stem cells, which are able to differentiate into a wide number of mature cell types. However, cell replacement therapies require large numbers of cells to clinically develop and commercialize, and the current stem cell culture methods are problematic in multiple ways, including low cell yields in 2D and poorly defined culture components. By culturing stem cells three-dimensionally, instead of two-dimensionally, far larger numbers of cells can be generated. Current three-dimensional culturing systems, however, often exert harmful shear stresses and pressures on the cells, have harsh cell recovery steps, do thus not generate large cell yields.   UC Berkeley researchers have developed new materials intended for use in fully chemically defined processes for large-scale growth and differentiation of stem cells. These materials prevent harsh cell recovery steps, and can be used in a defined, highly tunable, and three-dimensional cell culture system. 

Dielectrophoresis-Based Cell Destruction to Eliminate/Remove Unwanted Subpopulations of Cells

This invention allows for label free cell separations and cell enrichment.

Long Wavelength Voltage Sensitive Dyes

Rapid changes in the membrane potential of neurons and cardiomyocytes define the unique physiology of these cells. The classical means to monitor membrane potentials is patch clamp electrophysiology, a low-throughput and highly invasive technique. One current alternative is to use calcium imaging, as the agents are robust and sensitive, come in a variety of colors, and can be used in a wide range of biological contexts. Calcium imaging, however, allows only an imperfect approximation of membrane potential changes, and fast-spiking neuronal events are difficult to resolve. Fluorescent voltage sensors can achieve fast, sensitive, and non-disruptive direct readouts of membrane potentials. UC Berkeley researchers have designed and synthesized a new fluorophore called ‘Berkeley Red’ that can be used in the context of voltage-sensing scaffolds to generate fluorescent voltage sensors. 

Detection System for Small Molecules

There is a great demand for sensitive tests that can be used for the detection of very small analytes. Standard ELISA assays require a competitive format that loses sensitivity and produces readings inversely proportional to the analyte concentration. However, researchers at the University of California, Davis have developed an efficient and easy assay to determine the presence of very small molecule analytes such as pollutants, pesticides, drugs, toxins, and pharmaceuticals.

Low-Cost Chromatin Assembly Kit

Brief description not available

Novel Multivalent Bioassay Reagents

The guiding principle for the creation of biomolecular recognition agents has been that affinity is essential for both strength and specificity.  Monoclonal antibodies, the dominant workhorse of affinity reagents, have mono-valent affinities in the uM-nM range with apparent affinities that can be sub nM with the bi-valency intrinsic in intact immunoglobulin structure.  The avidin-biotin interaction used ubiquitously for biomolecular assembly is femto-molar and both highly specific and essentially irreversible.  High affinity has been proclaimed the essential goal for the selection of useful specific aptamers, though there has been disagreement about a tight coupling of affinity and specificity.  

Imprinted Polymer Nanoparticles

Synthetic polymer nanoparticles (NPs) capable of recognizing specific biomacromolecules and can be used as substitutes for natural antibodies .

Isotope Targeted Glycoproteomics For Nontemplated Glycan And Peptide Isoform Discovery

Glycosylation is a heterogeneous and substoichiometric post-translational modification (PTM) on proteins. Glycan heterogeneity directly translates to difficulties in the detection and identification of glycopeptides in glycoproteomics. Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley have recently developed a targeted, mass independent chemical glycoproteomics platform for characterization of intact, metabolically labeled glycopeptides. This novel technology utilizes the multifunctional cleavable probe for enrichment of labeled glycoproteins, and imparts an isotopically recoded mass envelope to the released glycopeptides. The recoded mass envelope is used as a selection factor for targeted glycoproteomics, and isotopically recoded glycopeptides are selected for tandem MS analysis at a four-fold higher rate. We identified over 550 glycopeptide isoforms from 240 proteins across Jurkat, PC-3, and MCF-7 cancer cell lines. Targeted analysis of tagged species facilitated the high confidence assignment of intact glycopeptides that were not present in the predicted protein database.

Analogs of N-acetylglucosamine and The Therapeutic Use in Treating Autoimmune Diseases

Analogs of N-acetylglucosamine are compounds with the same therapeutic benefits of N-acetylglucosamine and improved cell membrane permeability.

Voltage-Sensitive Fluorescent (VF) Dyes For Neuronal Imaging

The electrophysiological recordings of the activity of single neurons embedded within a network provides a powerful method for understanding brain function. While this approach has proven incredibly powerful, real limitations exist, namely the invasive requirement of sticking an electrode into biological samples, severely disrupting underlying tissue, restricting recordings primarily to cellular soma, and making recording from multiple sites challenging or impossible. UC Berkeley researchers have developed compositions and methods for sparsely labeling neurons of cells with VF dyes. The VF dyes are sensitive to small variations in neuronal transmembrane potentials and can respond both to rapid and sustained membrane potential changes. The invention is also less susceptible to capacitative loading issues.

New Borylated Heterocycles: Indoles, Isoxazoles, Lactones, and Benzofurans, and the Methods to Make Them (related to UC Case 2016-029)

Boron building blocks play a key role in modern organic chemistry, especially in drug design and materials synthesis. Methods to generate heterocycles and borylated compounds in the same synthetic step are largely unknown; the ability to do both increases efficiency and rapidly builds molecular complexity while providing access to previously unavailable building blocks.

Polyclonal Antibody to Catestatin

The processing of Chromogranin A, a pro-hormone in secretory granules of chromaffin cells and post-ganglionic sympathetic neurons, yields several biologically active polypeptides including catestatin. Catestatin is a nicotinic-cholinergic antagonist that diminishes catecholamine release, and whose plasma concentration may be diminished in hypertension. Catestatin may also constitute an early or “intermediate phenotype” in assessing genetic risk for cardiovascular disease.

Monoclonal Antibodies Against Amyloid Beta Peptides

Seven monoclonal antibodies that react specifically with amyloid beta peptides can be used as the research tools for Alzheimer’s disease (AD) research.

Targeted biological signal enhancement

This research tool consists of a two-vector system that can recruit an amplified biological signal to intra-cellular targets of interest.

Mass Spectrometry Reagents for Selective Alkylation and Charge Density Modification of Cysteine Residues

This invention comprises a family of small molecules that efficiently and selectively react with cysteine residues while imparting an additional positive charge to facilitate mass spectrometric and other analytical analyses.

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