A Medical Device Daily

Medtronic (Minneapolis) and Boston Scientific (Natick, Massachusetts) reported settlements in two cases and an agreement to stand down in three other lawsuits.

The companies said these agreements stop all current litigation between the two companies in the fields of interventional cardiology and endovascular repair. All the disputes were over intellectual property.

"Stopping this litigation allows us to focus our resources on the development of new products that will improve the quality of care for people with cardiovascular disease," said Scott Ward, president of the CardioVascular business and senior VP at Medtronic.

The stand-down agreements are time-limited and involve only Medtronic and Boston Scientific. Medtronic said it would continue litigation in two of the cases against Abbott Laboratories (Abbott Park, Illinois).

Terms of the settlement were not disclosed, but both companies said the agreements would not have a material impact on their financial results.

"We are pleased to have reached these agreements which will allow us to focus our efforts and resources on developing new products and therapies that improve patients' lives," said Hank Kucheman, senior VP and group president of Boston Scientific's Cardiovascular division.

The cases include:

A. Medtronic Vascular, Inc., et al. v. Boston Scientific Corp., et al., No. 2:06-cv-00078-TJW-CMC, pending in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas;

B. Boston Scientific Corp., et al. v. Medtronic, Inc., et al., No. 6:08-cv-320, pending in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas;

C. Medtronic Vascular, Inc., et al. v. Boston Scientific Corp., et al. and Abbott Laboratories, et al., No. 2:08-cv-00318-TJW, pending in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas;

D. Medtronic Vascular, Inc., et al. v. Abbott Cardiovascular Systems, Inc., et al., No. C-06-01066 (PJH), pending in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California; and

E. Boston Scientific Corp., et al. v. Medtronic, Inc., et al., No. CV 08 3844 PJH, pending in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.

In other legalities, Life Technologies (Carlsbad, California) reported that a jury in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California rendered a verdict in its favor in its patent-infringement dispute with Illumina (San Diego).

In this dispute, Illumina alleged that the SOLiD sequencing system commercialized by Applied Biosystems, a subsidiary of Life Technologies, infringed three patents, namely U.S. Patent Nos. 5,969,119; 5,750,341; and 6,306,597. The court previously ruled that the SOLiD system did not infringe two of the three patents and the jury was tasked with deciding whether Applied Biosystems' SOLiD technology infringed the '119 patent and whether this patent was valid.

After a seven-day jury trial, the jury unanimously decided that the SOLiD sequencing technology did not infringe the '119 patent, the company reported.

"We are very pleased with the decisions by the Court and the jury in this action," said Kip Miller, president, Genetic Systems Division at Life Technologies. "The SOLiD sequencing platform was developed through substantial R&D efforts within Applied Biosystems. These decisions validate our belief that the SOLiD sequencing system is unique in its design and paves the way for us to continue building on its innovative design and superlative performance with the upcoming launch of SOLiD 3.0 this February."

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