– CRISPR-chrom technology improves access to genome for more efficient editing
– Only U.S. patent holder in the CRISPR chromatin space
– Company driving innovation in CRISPR gene-editing technologies
Merck, a leading science and technology company, today announced that the United States Patent and Trademark Office has granted the company’s patent for CRISPR-chrom technology. With this allowance, Merck is the only provider with a patent covering the fusion of chromatin modulating peptides to CRISPR proteins, helping to clear chromatin out of the way, increasing access to the genome.
“This award marks our second U.S. CRISPR patent and our 23rd CRISPR-related patent worldwide, and as a leading innovator of CRISPR technology, we will continue to drive innovation and collaborate with scientists around the world to ensure that they have the most advanced gene-editing options,” said Udit Batra, member of the Merck Executive Board and CEO, Life Science.
Because genomic DNA in mammalian cells is wrapped tightly in protein complexes called chromatin, the genomic DNA is often inaccessible to CRISPR. Merck’s CRISPR-chrom technology works by fusing chromatin modulating peptides to a CRISPR protein, Cas9 (i.e., CRISPR’s DNA scissors), allowing for more efficient gene editing. This work was initially published in the February 2018 issue of The CRISPR Journal and was one of the journal’s top five downloaded articles of the year.
The Life Science business of Merck, a leader in genome editing, conducts research and development to drive improvements in gene-editing technologies.
The company’s CRISPR patent portfolio includes granted patents for CRISPR-related technologies covering foundational and alternative genome-editing methods. Patents for the company’s CRISPR integration technology have been granted in Australia, Canada, China, Europe, Israel, Singapore and South Korea. Patents granted in Europe and pending elsewhere cover plasmid or viral vectors encoding CRISPR systems, which are necessary to perform genome modification in eukaryotic cells. Other European patents and pending applications are for protein-RNA nickase compositions.
Merck received its first U.S. patent in February 2019 for its proxy-CRISPR technology, which makes CRISPR more efficient, flexible and specific. The company has successfully out-licensed its CRISPR patent portfolio and continues to license its entire CRISPR patent portfolio for all fields of use. Merck is proactively and aggressively pursuing CRISPR patent out-licensing partners for therapeutics, agriculture and research and welcome such collaboration opportunities.
CRISPR technology is a core competency for Merck, which has 16 years’ experience with genome editing, spanning from discovery to manufacturing. The company develops technologies in a range of genome-editing applications, including gene knockout, gene integration and CRISPR libraries for genetic screens, among others.
Merck recognizes that genome editing has resulted in major advancements in biological research and medicine. At the same time, the growing potential of genome-editing technologies has opened scientific, legal and societal concerns. The company supports research with genome editing under careful consideration of ethical and legal standards. Merck has established an independent, external Bioethics Advisory Panel to provide guidance for research in which its businesses are involved, including research on or using genome editing, and has developed, defined and transparently published a clear operational position taking into account scientific and societal issues to inform promising therapeutic approaches for use in research and applications.
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Merck, a leading science and technology company, operates across healthcare, life science and performance materials. Around 57,000 employees work to make a positive difference to millions of people’s lives every day by creating more joyful and sustainable ways to live. From advancing gene editing technologies and discovering unique ways to treat the most challenging diseases to enabling the intelligence of devices – the company is everywhere. In 2019, Merck generated sales of €16.2 billion in 66 countries.
Scientific exploration and responsible entrepreneurship have been key to Merck’s technological and scientific advances. This is how Merck has thrived since its founding in 1668. The founding family remains the majority owner of the publicly listed company. Merck holds the global rights to the Merck name and brand. The only exceptions are the United States and Canada, where the business sectors of Merck operate as EMD Serono in healthcare, MilliporeSigma in life science and EMD Performance Materials.
What’s the news: T-Mobile has deployed its super-fast Ultra Capacity 5G in and around the Miami VA Healthcare System — another milestone in its long-standing partnership with the VA to expand healthcare access to Veterans.
Why it matters: The future of healthcare is now! With 5G speeds, medical teams can improve critical telehealth services and provide more efficient care across the facility with instant wireless access to large amounts of patient information.
Who it’s for: Medical staff and veterans served by the VA.
T-Mobile (NASDAQ: TMUS) today announced it has deployed Ultra Capacity 5G at the Miami Veterans Affairs (VA) Healthcare System, bringing incredible 5G speed and performance to medical staff and patients with capable devices. T-Mobile currently provides in-building 4G LTE wireless connectivity across more than 50 VA Healthcare Systems with more to come this year. Today, thanks to a new custom 5G installation — the first T-Mobile has deployed at any hospital — doctors and nurses can tap into America’s largest and fastest 5G network throughout the facility in Miami.
In-building 5G radios provide T-Mobile’s Ultra Capacity 5G coverage in the hospital that can deliver speeds of 300 Mbps (7.5x faster than LTE today) with peaks up to 1 Gbps. And, faster speeds are important when every second counts. Medical teams will be able to quickly access high bandwidth files such as imaging results, labs and medical charts without having to be tethered to a computer. And, this is just the beginning! In the future, 5G will unlock new capabilities that could take healthcare to the next level.
“We set out to do good with our 5G network and right now healthcare is more important than ever. T-Mobile’s Ultra Capacity 5G brings healthcare providers the fastest 5G network of any provider enabling them to deliver high quality medical care,” said Mike Katz, EVP, T-Mobile for Business. “We are proud to be a long-standing partner of the VA and now the medical teams at the Miami VA Healthcare System can tap into 5G. This is an exciting step towards the future of healthcare made possible by the T-Mobile network.”
T-Mobile works with hundreds of top hospitals and health systems in the U.S., including the VA, to put wireless connectivity in the hands of both medical providers and patients. The Un-carrier collaborated with the VA to provide up to 70,000 lines of wireless service to doctors, nurses and hospital staff across their hospitals and also worked with the VA Secretary’s Center for Strategic Partnerships (SCSP) to help enhance access to the VA’s telehealth platform, VA Video Connect, to make healthcare more accessible to millions of veterans — providing free unlimited access to online telehealth services. T-Mobile continues to connect a significant number of VA telehealth visits which surged during the pandemic. More than one in four veterans received a portion of their care in the VA via telehealth — that’s a 79% increase in veterans served from the previous year.
“Groundbreaking collaborative partnerships like this play an important role in our success moving forward and we are grateful to T-Mobile for their continued commitment to the partnership with VA,” said Deborah Scher, Executive Advisor to the VA Secretary and leads the VA’s SCSP.
“T-Mobile has a strategic vision aligned with the VA to deliver the best technology giving veterans every advantage in quality care, both on-site and through telehealth appointments,” said David Bezzant, Vice President T-Mobile for Government. “Our partnership with the VA has allowed us to work together to build customized solutions enabling the VA to bring more healthcare services to veterans.”
T-Mobile for Business brings healthcare and enterprise customers 5G that’s better for business. With America’s largest and fastest nationwide 5G network, the Un-carrier brings fast 5G speed to more people and places than any other wireless provider. Extended Range 5G goes beyond cities and extends to rural areas covering 280 million people over 1.6 million square miles.T-Mobile’s unmatched Ultra Capacity 5G can deliver speeds of 300 Mbps and peak speeds up to 1 Gbps giving rise to the convergence of mobility for companies to work more efficiently, drive additional productivity, solve business challenges and ultimately bring best in class advancements to the market and customers.
For more information on T-Mobile’s partnership to expand telehealth access for veterans, visit https://www.t-mobile.com/business/resources/articles/va-case-study.
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