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Incyte Licenses Disputed Microarray Technology to American Home

NEW YORK, Oct 3 – In the midst of an intellectual property battle with Affymetrix (Nasdaq: AFFX) over a non-PCR based RNA technology that researchers use in microarray-based gene expression analysis, Incyte Genomics (Nasdaq: INCY) said Tuesday it had licensed the related patents to American Home Products (NYSE: AHP) for internal use with Affy’s GeneChips.

AHP, a Madison, NJ-based pharmaceutical company, is also a subscriber to Incyte’s LifeSeq gene sequence database.

Incyte of Palo Alto, Calif., charges that Affymetrix of Santa Clara, Calif., induces its customers to use the patented technology when preparing samples for use with its chip, violating an exclusive license Incyte says it obtained from Layton Bioscience.

In August Incyte filed a patent infringement suit against the chipmaker over US patent numbers 5,716,785 and 5,891,636 covering the technology.

The company filed a similar lawsuit against Gene Logic (Nasdaq: GLGC) in December 1999.

Affymetrix, however, argues that its customers are not required to license the technology because the patents are not valid based on prior art.

Affymetrix declined to comment on AHP’s decision to license the disputed technology.

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