A Medical Device Daily

In a continuing dispute between competitors in the medical aesthetics sector, Syneron Medical (Yokneam, Israel) reported filing a patent infringement counterclaim against Thermage (Hayward, California), alleging that Thermage infringes U.S. patent No. 5,569,242, which Syneron recently acquired.

The counterclaim, filed on Jan. 10, was added to the patent litigation between Thermage and Syneron pending in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California (Medical Device Daily, Dec. 10, 2004).

The '242 patent covers methods for controlled contraction of collagen using radio frequency energy. Syneron said that this patent predates each of the patents asserted by Thermage in the lawsuit. Syneron's counterclaim alleges that the methods performed by Thermage's ThermaCool device infringe the '242 patent, and Syneron is seeking damages and an injunction enjoining any future infringement.

Moshe Mizrahy, CEO of Syneron, said, “Syneron is pleased that it had the opportunity to acquire this patent, which we believe is a fundamental patent and enhances our intellectual property position.“ He promised a vigorous defense against the Thermage suit, and that Syneron “will continue to compete strongly in the marketplace by supplying doctors with its high-quality devices based on its proprietary ELOS technology.“

Syneron manufactures devices powered by its ELOS combined-energy technology enabling a range of medical/aesthetic applications, including hair removal, wrinkle reduction, rejuvenating the skin's appearance and the treatment of acne, leg veins and cellulite.