Blog Tag: Patents
San Diego-based NuVasive, Inc. filed two petitions last Friday with the Patent Trial and Appeal Board for inter partes review of Medtronic subsidiary Warsaw Orthopedic, Inc.’s U.S. Pat. No. 8,251,997. The sole listed inventor of the ‘997 patent is Dr. Gary Michelson.
The ‘997 patent is entitled “Method for Inserting an Artificial Implant Between Two Adjacent Vertebrae Along a Coronal Plane” and “relates generally to instrumentation and methods of performing surgical procedures on the human thoracic and lumbar spine along the lateral aspect of the spine and from a true lateral or anterolateral approach, and specifically to the surgical correction of thoracic and lumbar disc disease and spinal deformities where concomitant fusion is desired.” Figure 13 from the ‘997 patent is shown below:
NuVasive’s first and second petitions collectively seek review of all 30 of the claims of the ‘997 patent, asserting the claims are obvious over a number of references. The associated exhibits can be found by visiting the Board’s website, entering the patent number 8251997, and clicking on the Search button.
Medtronic and NuVasive have a history of spinal patent infringement litigation. In 2008, Medtronic filed a patent lawsuit against NuVasive relating to spinal implants, and NuVasive filed patent infringement counterclaims. The first phase of this litigation went to trial in 2011, where Medtronic won $101 million in damages and NuVasive won $660,000, and is still ongoing.
Of note, the ‘997 patent, among others, was asserted by Warsaw against NuVasive in another pending patent infringement lawsuit originally filed in the Northern District of Indiana. The case has since been transferred to the Southern District of California. Warsaw’s alleged infringement contentions against NuVasive with respect to the ‘997 patent can be found here.
Heart Failure Technologies, LLC filed a petition yesterday with the Patent Trial and Appeals Board for inter partes review of CardioKinetix, Inc.’s U.S. Patent No. 7,582,051. The ‘051 patent, entitled “Peripheral Seal For a Ventricular Partitioning Device,” issued on September 1, 2009. According to the ‘051 patent, the patent “relates generally to the field of treating heart disease, particularly congestive heart failure, and more specifically, to a device and method for partitioning a patient’s heart chamber and a system for delivering the treatment device.” Figure 11E from the ‘051 patent is shown below:
Although the petition is not yet publicly available, the titles of the exhibits to the petition reference U.S. Patent Nos. 6,152,144, 7,485,088, and 7,717,955, and U.S. Patent Publication Nos. 2003/0050685, 2002/0111647, and 2005/0137688. The exhibit titles can be seen by visiting the Board’s website, searching for the ‘051 patent, and clicking on the Case Number link.
OrbusNeich Medical Inc. and its subsidiary, Orbus International B.V., announced on Friday a lawsuit against Boston Scientific Corp. in Ireland for alleged patent infringement. According to the press release, the lawsuit alleges that Boston Scientific’s coronary stent systems, including the PROMUS Element™, PROMUS Element Plus™, OMEGA™, TAXUS™, SYNERGY™, and Promus PREMIER™ lines of stents, infringe European Patent No. 2,311,412 and European Patent No. 1,341,482, both entitled “Stent having helical elements,” granted on August 9, 2012 and September 23, 2010, respectively. Figure 11 from the ‘412 patent is shown below:
In February, OrbusNeich filed suit against Boston Scientific for patent infringement in Germany and the Netherlands. A patent infringement suit filed by OrbusNeich against Boston Scientific in the U.S. in 2009 was stayed pending reexamination of the patents by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The asserted European patents are available at EP 2,311,412 and EP 1,341,482.
Boston Scientific has prevailed in the appeal of its lawsuit against Cordis Corporation. Boston Scientific alleged in the lawsuit that Cordis’ 2.25 mm Cypher Sirolimus DES coronary stent infringed U.S. Pat. No. 5,922,021, entitled “Intravascular Stent”. Figure 1A from the ‘021 Patent is shown below:
In a per curiam decision, the Federal Circuit affirmed, without further comment, the District Court’s March 2012 decision, which awarded Boston Scientific enhanced damages based on a finding of willful infringement of the ‘021 patent. The total award to Boston Scientific was approximately $42 million. A 32% royalty rate was assessed on sales of Cypher stents not included in the judgment.
The ‘021 patent was previously subject to ex parte re-examination, and a re-examination certificate issued on April 17, 2012. According to a Cordis press release, Cordis discontinued manufacturing Cypher and Cypher Select Plus Sirolimus-Eluting Coronary Stents at the end of 2011.
EVM Systems, LLC has filed a new lawsuit targeting Rex Medical, L.P. and Argon Medical Devices, Inc. The lawsuit alleges infringement of U.S. Patent No. 8,052,670, entitled “Medical Device With Slotted Memory Metal Tube.” According to the ’670 Patent, the patent “generally relates to an instrument which uses a slotted memory metal tube to perform or assist in various medical procedures.” ’670 Patent, col. 1, lines 17-19. Figure 1A from the ’670 Patent is shown below:
According to the ’670 Patent, Figure 1A illustrates a “memory metal tube 11 with four slots 12 near the distal end. The slots 12 create a balloon-shaped structure which can be used as a retrieval basket for small particles 14, with a closure around the caught particle due to the concave shape of the inner wall of the memory metal tube 11.” ’670 Patent, col. 3, lines 32-37.
EVM Systems alleges that Rex Medical’s Option™ Vena Cava Filter infringes the ’670 Patent. EVM Systems is a subsidiary of Acacia Research Corporation and has sued a number of medical device companies in the past several years, including Boston Scientific, Cordis Corporation, and Abbott Laboratories. According to the complaint, Rex Medical is based in Pennsylvania, and Rex Medical’s distributor, Argon Medical Devices, is based in Texas. The complaint and asserted patents are available here.
Back in Five, LLC, has settled its patent infringement lawsuit against Infinite International, Inc. A consent decree entered in the District Court enjoins Infinite International from manufacturing and selling devices that infringe U.S. Patent Nos. 6,443,916 and 7,179,237, entitled “Device for Preventing or Relieving Pain in the Lower Back”. The ‘916 and ‘237 patents relate to a device for simultaneously pulling and lifting a user’s lower back:
The consent decree states that the patents are valid and enforceable. The lawsuit was filed on January 7, 2011, and also asserted claims of trade dress infringement and unfair competition.
A new patent infringement suit has been filed against Medtronic and CoreValve targeting percutaneous aortic valve implantation technology. The lawsuit was brought by a cardiologist, Troy Norred, and alleges infringement of Norred’s United States Patent No. 6,482,228 (“the ’228 patent”) entitled, “Percutaneous Aortic Valve Replacement.” The ’228 Patent relates to a balloon catheter with an inverted umbrella shaped valve with frame members or ribs that move between a folded position and an unfolded position.
The lawsuit alleges that the ’228 patent is infringed by Medtronic’s CoreValve ReValving System. In November of last year, Edwards Lifesciences succeeded in the appeal of its patent infringement lawsuit targeting Medtronic’s CoreValve ReValving System.
The complaint and the asserted patent in Norred v. Medtronic are available here.
C.R. Bard, Inc., and Bard Peripheral Vascular, Inc., are the latest targets of a series of lawsuits brought by LifeScreen Sciences LLC. LifeScreen filed a patent infringement lawsuit in the District of Delaware on January 30 accusing C.R. Bard and Bard Peripheral of patent infringement. LifeScreen Sciences and LifePort Sciences have recently filed patent infringement suits against Cook, Inc., Cordis Corporation, Medtronic Corp., W.L. Gore & Associates Inc. and Endologix, Inc.
LifeScreen’s latest lawsuit alleges that C.R. Bard’s Meridian vena cava filter infringes several patents, including U.S. Patent No. 6,468,290, entitled “Two-Planar Vena Cava Filter With Self-Centering Capabilities,” which issued in 2002. The patent relates to a two-plane filter with filter wires with extensions that are applied against the wall of a vein and compel the filter “to adopt a position with its axis generally coincident with the axis of the vein…” The ‘290 patent was originally assigned to SciMed Life Systems, Inc.
LifeScreen’s other lawsuits have targeted similar technologies. For example, on January 23, 2013, LifeScreen filed lawsuits in Delaware and Texas alleging infringement of U.S. Patent No. 6,214,025, entitled “Self-Centering, Self-Expanding and Retrievable Vena Cava Filter,” a patent originally assigned to Boston Scientific.
The complaint and asserted patents in LifeScreen Sciences v. C.R. Bard are available here.
Edwards Lifesciences succeeded in its appeal at the Federal Circuit in the lawsuit Edwards Lifesciences v. CoreValve. Edwards’ lawsuit asserted that the Medtronic CoreValve ReValving system infringed U.S. Patent No. 5,411,552, entitled “Valve Prosthesis for Implantation in the Body and a Catheter for Implanting Such Valve Prosthesis”.
The Federal Circuit upheld the District Court’s decision in favor of Edwards Lifesciences and sent the case back to the District Court to reconsider its decision to deny an injunction. The Federal Circuit’s decision is available here.
TP Orthodontics, Inc. sued Hangzhou Shinye Orthodontic Products and Global Orthodontics in the Northern District of Illinois. The lawsuit alleges that Hangzhou Shinye’s “Transmission Series Brackets” infringe U.S. Patent No. 6,682,345, entitled “Orthodontic Bracket,” which issued in 2004. According to the complaint, Hangzhou Shinye is a Chinese corporation, and Global Orthodontics is based in Virginia. In addition to patent infringement, the lawsuit asserts trademark infringement claims based on the defendants’ alleged use of the mark “TIP-Edge Plus” on their website and in their marketing literature. In 2011, TP Orthodontics filed suit against Burris Dental Group, P.A. and Hixson-Burris Publishing, LLC for trademark infringement. The complaint and asserted patents in the TP Orthodontics v. Hangzhou Shinye case are available here.