PASADENA, Calif. — Osmetech plc (LSE, AIM; OMH) today announced that it has granted a non-exclusive research license to Waltham, Massachusetts, US-based Minerva Biotechnologies Corporation (“Minerva”) for use of Osmetech’s self-assembling monolayer (SAM) technology in conjunction with Minerva’s proprietary nanoparticle technology. Osmetech, a fast developing, international molecular diagnostics business with operations in Boston and Pasadena, USA serves the high growth, near patient testing market and holds exclusive rights to the technology, which it exclusively licensed from Harvard University in 1997, and for which Minerva’s founder and Chief Scientific Officer, Cynthia Bamdad, Ph.D., was the lead inventor. Financial details were not disclosed.

SAM technology is finding increasing merit in array and sensor technologies, particularly in electrochemical biosensing, where it is used to minimize background signal, provide for uniform functionalized attachment of molecules to surfaces and reduce nonspecific aggregation events. Minerva plans to use SAMs in tandem with its proprietary nanoparticle technology for signal enhancement, drug design, drug screening, and functional proteomics. Osmetech, by contrast, uses the technology in conjunction with nucleic acid analyte diagnostics. Late last year Osmetech licensed the same technology to Illinois-based Ohmx Corporation for use in non-nucleic acid analyte detection schemes, and is currently in dialog with a number of other companies that have also expressed interest, according to Edward Kreusser, Osmetech’s VP of Intellectual Property and Legal Affairs.

“SAM use is by no means limited to electrochemical detection and is just one complementary piece of a much broader intellectual property position held in that field by Osmetech. In addition to the Harvard SAM IP, Osmetech also holds exclusive rights to very valuable biosensing patents owned by California Institute of Technology (Caltech), University of North Carolina, CMS and Concordia University, as well as a host of nonexclusive patent rights to a variety of related IP,” says Kreusser.

James White, CEO of Osmetech said, “When Osmetech acquired Clinical Micro Sensors, Inc. (CMS) from Motorola, it came with a patent portfolio that had over $25 million spent on it and has over 145 granted patents worldwide with many more pending. This is another good example of our ability to maximize our economic return by actively out-licensing our significant intellectual property portfolio into non-diagnostic areas. We look forward to announcing other partnerships in the near future.”

About Osmetech
Osmetech plc ( is an AIM-listed public company on the London Stock Exchange. The company is a fast developing, international molecular diagnostics business with operations in Boston and Pasadena in the US, serving the high growth, near patient testing market targeting small to medium sized hospitals. Osmetech has launched eSensor(R), an FDA cleared electrochemistry-based array system, for cystic fibrosis carrier detection and plan to launch a number of pharmacogenomic assays utilizing the same proprietary technology.

About Minerva Biotechnologies Corporation
Minerva Biotechnologies Corp. has developed a nanoparticle product line called Nano Vision. The first product is Nano Specs which are user-friendly nanoparticles that are functionalized to instantly capture and present any affinity tagged molecule. Minerva has proprietary nanoparticle applications in drug screening, disease diagnosis, and high throughput proteomics.

[tags]Osmetech plc,Minerva Biotechnologies Corporation, FDA cleared electrochemistry array system, cystic fibrosis carrier detection, self assembling monolayer technology, Pasadena news[/tags]