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Invitrogen, Genetic Applications Settle Patent Infringement Dispute

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Invitrogen and Genetic Applications have settled a lawsuit that Genetic Applications filed last year alleging Invitrogen’s infringement of a patent covering gene-transfer technology.
 
According to court documents, the US District Court for the Eastern District of Texas dismissed the case on Dec. 10 in response to a request from Genetic Applications. Terms of the settlement were not disclosed. 
 
Genetic Applications filed suit against Invitrogen in October 2006 alleging that the company infringed US Patent No. RE39220, a reissue of US Patent No. 5,670,347. The patent covers the use of a synthetic polypeptide to transfer DNA into eukaryotic cell lines and primary cells.
 
Genetic Applications claimed that Invitrogen infringed the reissued patent through the sale of its Plus Reagent, which is used to introduce DNA into the nucleus of living cells.
 
Genetic Applications initially sued Life Technologies for infringing the ‘347 patent in June 1999, but that case was dismissed because Life Technologies filed a request to have the patent reviewed and reissued.
 
On Aug. 1, 2006, the US Patent and Trademark Office reissued the patent as No. RE39220 and Genetic Applications filed suit against Invitrogen, which acquired Life Technologies in 2000.
 
As GenomeWeb Daily News sister publication BioCommerce Week reported in October, Invitrogen had asked the Texas court to bar Genetic Applications from recovering damages because it failed to timely assert its rights under the R‘220 patent.
 
In an October filing with the court, Invitrogen said that the seven-year delay in filing the case was “unreasonable and inexcusable,” and accused Genetic Applications of “laches,” or undue delay in asserting a claim in order to increase damages.
 
“A plaintiff may not ‘intentionally lie in wait watching damages escalate’ … which is precisely what Genetic Applications has done in this case,” Invitrogen said at the time.

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