Monday, September 20, 2004

Bayh-Dole arrangement in nanotech/microfluidics

from Business Wire-->

PASADENA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Sept. 20, 2004--Arrowhead Research Corporation announced today that the California Institute of Technology ("Caltech") has granted exclusive rights to over 80 new U.S. and international patents and patent applications covering microfluidics and micromachines technology to Nanotechnica, Inc., a subsidiary of Arrowhead Research. R. Bruce Stewart, President of Arrowhead Research, remarked, "This new technology further strengthens the growing portfolio of patent rights held by Arrowhead and its subsidiaries, which includes exclusive rights to over 180 U.S. and international patents and patent applications in the nanotechnology space."

Dr. Yu-Chong Tai, the primary inventor of the licensed technology, is a consultant to Nanotechnica. Dr. Tai has extensive experience in micromachines and microfluidics and has developed devices such as sensors, anemometers, actuators, microvalves, and micromotors. He is a Caltech Professor of Electrical Engineering and the Director of the Caltech Micromachining Laboratory.

The Nanotechnica research and development team is presently led by Chief Technical Officer Dr. Michael Roukes, who is currently on leave from Caltech. Dr. Roukes, Caltech Professor of Physics, Applied Physics and Bioengineering, is the Director of Caltech's Kavli Nanoscience Institute, co-founder of the Nanosystems Biology Alliance, co-founder and co-director of both the Initiative in Computational Molecular Biology and the Laboratory for Large Scale Integration of Nanostructures, and chair of the external advisory board of Harvard University's nanoscience center. Nanotechnica's R&D group also includes consultant Dr. Scott Fraser, the Anna L. Rosen Professor of Biology and Director of the Biological Imaging Center at Caltech.

"We are pleased to have Dr. Tai as a key scientific consultant to Nanotechnica. The combination of Dr. Roukes' expertise in nano-electro-mechanical systems, Dr. Tai's experience with microfluidics, and Dr. Fraser's knowledge of biological systems will provide Nanotechnica with one of the most talented interdisciplinary nanotech teams in the world," said Stewart.

Nanotechnica is initially focusing on commercializing nanoscale devices such as scanning probe tips, pathogen sensors, and medical diagnostics. Nanotechnica seeks to establish capabilities for mass production of a variety of different, proprietary nanoscale devices and systems.

--> About Dr. Roukes

PASADENA, Calif., April 22, 2004 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Arrowhead Research Corporation [profile] (OTC Bulletin Board: ARWR), an emerging company in the field of nanotechnology, announced today that it has reached an agreement with Dr. Michael Roukes, California Institute of Technology Professor of Physics, Applied Physics and Bioengineering, and Caltech itself, to form a new corporation, Nanokinetics, that will focus on the development of the processes and devices needed to commercialize various nanotechnology applications. Nanokinetics will be the third majority-owned subsidiary formed by Arrowhead Research.

Dr. Roukes has gained worldwide recognition through his work on the physics and fabrication of nanoscale electronic devices. He is the newly named founding Director of Caltech's Kavli Nanoscience Institute, which recently received a $7.5 million grant to foster innovative research at the frontiers of nanoscale science and engineering.

Nanokinetics plans to focus upon building the technological base required to transition today's academic "nanoscience of the individual device" to the integration and mass production required for these market-ready products. With this process-oriented focus, Nanokinetics hopes to jumpstart the commercialization of many of the nanotech applications already available. Dr. Roukes stated, "It is becoming clearer every day that the companies that make early and decisive investments to establish capabilities for complex nanodevice production will dominate the broader realm of commercial nanotechnology that lie beyond first-generation applications."

One application being developed by Dr. Roukes and his team is a microfluidic-based electronic biosensor based upon BioNEMS (biofunctionalized nanoelectromechanical systems). In the near term, nanosystems such as these, with nanoscale sensor elements numbering in the hundreds and thousands, can provide powerful new approaches to bio-threat detection, drug screening, and medical diagnostics -- with sensitivity approaching the single molecule level.

--March 12, 1998---

PASADENA--Wristwatch cellular phones and space probes the size of baseballs would certainly have some eager customers, but both are still the stuff of science fiction.

Nonetheless, physicists are making strides these days in the sort of miniaturization that could someday make tiny electromechanical devices a reality. One such milestone, the first nanometer-scale mechanical charge detector, is reported in the current issue of Nature.

According to Michael Roukes, professor of physics at Caltech and coinventor of the device, the new electrometer is among the most sensitive charge detectors in existence, and definitely the first based upon nanomechanical principles.

"One compelling reason for doing this sort of thing is to explore entirely new avenues for making small, ultralow power electronic devices," says Roukes.

"Making new types of electronic devices that involve moving elements, which we call nanoelectromechanical systems, will open up a huge variety of new technological applications in areas such as telecommunications, computation, magnetic resonance imaging, and space exploration. And the physics is exciting, besides."

The device fabricated at Caltech by Roukes and his former postdoctoral collaborator, Andrew Cleland (now an assistant professor at UC Santa Barbara), is a good example of the type of advances in solid-state devices that currently are loosely gathered these days under the rubric "nanotechnology." Roukes says he generally avoids using the term. "Rather, this is the kind of science that is building the foundation for real nanotechnology, not the stuff of fiction. Right now Mother Nature is really the only true nanotechnologist."


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