A Medical Device Daily

A U.S. District Court in Wilmington, Delaware, has entered a final judgment for about $1.2 billion to Cordis (Miami Lakes, Florida) against Medtronic (Minneapolis) and Boston Scientific (Natick, Massachusetts) in cases involving the original Palmaz balloon-expandable stent patent.

Juries in 2000 and 2005 found that Boston Scientific's and Medtronic's bare-metal stents infringed the Palmaz patent, which is owned by Cordis, a business of Johnson & Johnson (New Brunswick, New Jersey).

Medtronic was ordered to pay about $521 million and Boston Scientific roughly $703 million.

In March of 2005, separate juries found that Medtronic's GFX and Microstent II infringed Cordis' Palmaz ('762) and Schatz ('984) patents, and that Boston Scientific's NIR stent infringed the Palmaz patent. The Palmaz and Schatz patents relate to the fundamental design of the first coronary stent developed and introduced by Cordis.

Both patent infringement cases were originally tried in 2000, with Cordis receiving jury verdicts ruling in its favor. After a series of procedural rulings and appeals, both cases were retried in March of 2005, with Cordis prevailing again.

In other legalities, marketers of a weight-loss patch have agreed to pay $110,539 to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that they violated two 2004 consent orders by continuing to make false claims that their product causes substantial weight loss and weight loss in all users.

After agreeing to the 2004 consent orders, the marketers continued making the same bogus claims they had made previously, but this time they targeted consumers abroad. They made these claims in brochures accompanying shipments of the patches that were intended for sale to overseas consumers.

In 2004, Advanced Patch Technologies (APT), its distributor, Buckhead Marketing & Distribution (Los Angeles), and their officers, settled FTC charges of deceptive marketing based on their claims that, among other things, the "Peel Away the Pounds" patch would cause substantial weight loss when applied to the skin. That settlement required the defendants to pay more than $1 million in consumer redress.

Under the terms of the new settlement agreements, APT and Buckhead will forfeit, or disgorge, $67,471.50 and $43,068, respectively. These amounts represent the estimated profits these companies made from selling their weight-loss patches, with brochures containing the prohibited claims, since they agreed to the 2004 consent orders. The total amount will be paid to the U.S. Treasury.

Also under the new settlements, the defendants are barred from: selling any transdermal weight-loss products; advertising that any product causes substantial weight loss in all users; and making unsubstantiated claims for any product, service, or program that purportedly provides health benefits. The defendants also are prohibited from assisting others in doing any of these things.

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