Hoffmann-La Roche Inc. of Nutley, N.J., and its wholly ownedsubsidiary, Roche Molecular Systems Inc. of Branchburg, N.J.,announced that they have sued Promega Corp. for breaching alicense agreement regarding the manufacture and sale of nTaqpolymerase, the temperature-stable enzyme used inpolymerase chain reaction (PCR) gene amplification.

The patent covering this enzyme, which is used in PCRtechnology, was issued to Cetus Corp., which is now asubsidiary of Chiron Corp., in December 1989. The followingJuly, Cetus granted to privately held Promega of Madison,Wisc., a limited license to make and sell nTaq polymerase forapplications other than nucleic acid amplification technologies,including PCR. Those went to Roche, which in 1991 actuallyacquired rights to all Cetus' patents and the licenses granted byCetus under these patents relating to both the enzyme and thetechnology

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