A Medical Device Daily

Neothermia (Natick, Massachusetts) reported reaching an agreement with Rubicor Medical (Redwood City, California) for the dismissal of patent infringement and breach-of-contract litigation that Neothermia filed against Rubicor (Medical Device Daily, Sept. 24, 2003).

The companies have agreed to dismiss the claims against one another relating to the litigation. The agreement is limited to U.S. patent No. 6,514,248 B1 and its related patents, which remain valid, and has no affect on the remainder of Neothermia's patent portfolio, Neothermia said in a statement.

Thomas Tully, CEO of Neothermia, said, “This limited agreement allows us to focus our resources on marketing and sales efforts to further accelerate the growth of our business for the advanced en-bloc Breast Biopsy System. Growing clinical evidence continues to demonstrate that the en-bloc procedure can result in a significantly more accurate diagnosis than percutaneous core biopsy. Our extensive, powerful patent portfolio remains intact and enforceable.“

Privately held Neothermia develops minimally invasive systems for the excision of tissue for diagnostic and therapeutic applications in select cancer markets. The company's lead product, the en-bloc biopsy system, received FDA approval in June 2001. Initial products are targeted at breast biopsy and tumor excision.

Rubicor makes the EnCapsule Xtra and the EnCapsule Precise devices used in minimally invasive breast biopsy.

In other legalities, HealtheTech (Golden, Colorado), a developer of handheld medical devices and software for the measurement of metabolism and nutrition monitoring, said it has resolved its legal dispute with Microlife (Tampa, Florida).

Microlife, through its subsidiary Malacca International, filed suit against HealtheTech in December 2003. In 2004, HealtheTech filed its counterclaims, and the companies engaged in legal discovery. On Jan. 26, the parties agreed to end the 13-month litigation by dropping all claims against one another and filing to dismiss the case with prejudice.

HealtheTech also reported a new distribution agreement with Microlife as HealtheTech's exclusive distributor for its products in several Asian countries.

“We are pleased to have concluded this litigation and are looking forward to our new distribution relationship with Microlife in the Asian marketplace,“ said James Dennis, HealtheTech's CEO and chairman. “Microlife will now be our exclusive distributor for our metabolic measurement devices and related products in Hong Kong, China, Taiwan, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia.“

Microlife makes diagnostic equipment such as blood pressure monitors, thermometers and peak flow meters, exporting from its factory in Shenzhen, China.

HealtheTech's product line includes hardware and software enabling consumers to monitor their health and nutrition.

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