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Invitrogen Sues Incyte in Patent Dispute

SAN FRANCISCO, Oct. 18 – Contending patent violations, Invitrogen filed suit against Incyte Genomics Wednesday in the US District Court of Delaware, Invitrogen told GenomeWeb .

The primary patent in contention is Invitrogen’s SuperScript form of RNAse H minus reverse transcriptase, which Invitrogen said was sold to Incyte under a research-use-only license.

“We have been trying for several years to secure a license from Incyte for commercial use,” said Paul Goodson, vice president of investor relations at Carlsbad, Calif.-based Invitrogen. “We believe this is the only way we will be able to enforce the patent. Incyte is creating gene clones and bioinformatic information which they have gotten directly from the use of this product and are selling it, which violates research-usage license.”

Invitrogen seeks to have Palo Alto-based Incyte stop using the product without a commercial license and to stop buying the product from unlicensed third parties, according to Goodson.

Incyte said it has "no comment at this time.”

“We haven’t responded because we just received the complaint,” Paul Chirico, Incyte’s director of investor relations told GenomeWeb.

SuperScript, according to Invitrogen’s Goodson, it is the only commercial form of reverse transcriptase that does not have RNAse activity and thus gives it a competitive advantage for producing full-length genes.

Invitrogen obtained the SuperScript product as a consequence of the company’s September 2000 acquisition of Life Technologies. Before the acquisition, Life Technologies had stopped selling SuperScript to Incyte, according to Goodson, though he contends Incyte continued to obtain the product through Madison, Wis.-based Promega.

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