Patent application filed by Greenovation Biotech GmbH

Technology overview

Greenovation Biotech GmbH is a private company based in Freiburg, Germany, which conducts R&D in the field of biotechnology.  Dr Michael Schledz studied the application of hpd(gene coding for p-hydroxyphenyl-pyruvic acid dioxygenase, HPD) as an alternative reporter gene for a biosensor system in Escherichia coli and yeast (Saccharomyces cervisiae), the technology of which is disclosed in the application below.  HPD catalyzes metabolism of p-hydroxyphenyl-pyruvic acid into homogentistic acid, which, upon oxydation forms ochronotic acid, resulting in a detectable brown pigmentation.

Details of the patent document

Patent or Publication no. Title, Independent Claims and Summary Assignee and licensing information
WO 2002/053772

  • Earliest priority – 28 Dec 2000
  • Filed – 15 Nov 2001
  • Published – 11 Jul 2002
  • Expected expiry – not applicable
Title – Novel biosensor system

Claim 1
Biosensor system comprising

  • cell or organism harbouring a DNA molecule enabling said cell or organism to express p-hydroxyphenyl-pyruvic acid dioxygenase under the control of a promotor which is inducible by the presence of substances or conditions to be analyzed.
Claim 10
An isolated DNA molecule comprising a nucleotide sequence providing an expression cassette capable of directing the expression of p-hydroxyphenyl-pyruvic acid dioxygenase, wherein said expression cassette comprises from 5′ to 3′:
(a) an inducible promoter capable of expressing a downstream coding sequence;
(b) a DNA sequence coding for the expression of p-hydroxyphenyl-pyruvic acid dioxygenase; and
(c) a 3′ termination sequence,
characterized in that the inducible promoter (a) is selected from the group consisting of zntAcadAmerAnicchrarsfliCcorAdmpRxylRxylSpqiABSoxRSzrtzipycflcup1-1cup1-2geflftr1hal1gre1, and aad4.
Claim 16
Process for studying and/or monitoring the activity of a promoter or functional part thereof by the steps of using of

  • a vector which comprises a DNA sequence coding for the expression of p-hydroxyphenyl-pyruvic acid dioxygenase under the control of said promoter or functional part thereof and
  • a transcriptional terminator, wherein

the DNA sequence is, for the transformation of a host cell or organism, cultivating the transformants and monitoring the activity of said promoter or functional part thereof by measuring the content of ochronotic pigment accumulated in the culture medium.

The claims are generally drawn towards:

  • a biosensor system comprising a cell or organism harbouring a DNA molecule that can express p-hydroxyphenyl-pyruvic acid dioxygenase (claim 1)
  • an isolated DNA molecule comprising an expression cassette comprising an inducible promoter, a DNA sequence coding for the expression of p-hydroxyphenyl-pyruvic acid dioxygenase, and a 3′ termination sequence (claim 10)
  • a process for studying and/or monitoring the activity of a promoter or functional part thereof (claim 16)

Definitions extracted from the specification are:

  • Cell or organism – There is no definition for this term. Dependent claim 6 recites the cell or organism to be prokaryotic or eukaryotic, with subsequent claims 7, 8, and 9 reciting use of Escherichia coli, yeast, and Saccharomyces cervisiae, respectively.

Comments:

Since this is a published application and not a granted patent, currently there are no enforceable rights.

The specification provides examples of the following constructs and transformed organisms:

Induction substance Promoter gene Reporter gene Transformed organism
Zinc E. coli zntA Arabidopsis hpd E. coli TOP10
Zinc E. coli zntA Synechocystis hpd E. coli Bl21(DE3)RIL
Copper S. cerevisiae CUP1-2 Arabidopsis hpd S. cerevisiae INVSc1
Zinc E. coli zntA E. coli ßgal
E. coliTOP10
Greenovation Biotech GMBH

Boetzinger Str. 29 b
D-79111 Freiburg

Ph +49-761-470-99-0
Fax +49-761-470-99-190

Email info@greenovation.com

Remarks There is no information on this PCT application entering national phase in any jurisdiction by the end of the 30/31 month deadline from filing (which was 15 May/Jun 2004), as indicated by lack of INPADOC patent families and information on national phase entry on the WIPO Intellectual Property Digital Library (IPDL).

Search strategy

Search details
Date of search 01/05/2006
Database searched Patent Lens
Type of search Structured, stemming on
Collections searched AU-B, US-A, US-B, EP-B, WO
Search terms Greenovation in inventor
Results 16
Comments Of the 16 results identified using these search terms, one result was identified as being of particular interest based on the abstract and a review of claims.