A Medical Device Daily

Kinetic Concepts (KCI; San Antonio) reported that the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has upheld the validity of two Wake Forest University (Winston-Salem, North Carolina) patents involved in litigation against BlueSky Medical Group (Carlsbad, California) and Medela (Baar, Switzerland).

The court also upheld the jury finding that the patent claims involved in the case are not infringed by the gauze-based Versatile 1 system marketed by BlueSky, which was acquired by Smith & Nephew (London) in May 2007, KCI said. The Wake Forest patents encompass numerous and varied claims related to KCI's Vacuum Assisted Closure (V.A.C.) technology used for the treatment of patients with serious, complex wounds.

In May 2007 KCI and Medela both filed appeals in patent infringement litigation KCI brought against Medela and BlueSky. The trial court found the patents to be valid and enforceable, but not infringed, the companies reported. KCI appealed the part of the decision that found the patents were not infringed, while Medela appealed the part that found the KCI patents valid and enforceable (Medical Device Daily, May 3, 2007).

"The court's decision confirms our belief that the fundamental intellectual property covering our revolutionary V.A.C. technology is valid and enforceable," said Catherine Burzik, KCI's president/CEO. "KCI will continue to enforce its intellectual property rights which allow us to invest in new technologies that help millions of patients around the world. We remain committed to new product offerings and improvements in the areas of negative pressure and V.A.C. therapy, which we expect to launch in the coming months."