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German Federal Patent Court Rules in Favor of NanoString, Invalidating 10x Patent

NEW YORK – Bruker said Tuesday that the German Federal Patent Court has ruled in favor of NanoString Technologies' German subsidiary in its patent dispute with 10x Genomics.

Following the ruling, NanoString, which Bruker acquired this week, plans to ask the German Higher Regional Court of Munich to permanently lift the injunction on sales of its CosMx Spatial Molecular Imager products in Germany. It also said that it expects to have its attorney's fees and related legal expenses reimbursed.

The injunction was originally issued in May 2023 by the lower Munich Regional Court but was lifted in December by the German Higher Regional Court of Munich subject to a security bond payment.

In its Tuesday ruling, the German Federal Patent Court invalidated 10x Genomics' European Patent No. 2794928B1 in Germany. In its suit in Germany and before the European Unified Patent Court, 10x had asserted that NanoString's CosMx SMI products for RNA detection infringed upon the '928 patent.

"NanoString has consistently maintained that the patents being asserted by 10x Genomics against NanoString's CosMx SMI products are invalid," Mark Munch, president of the Bruker Nano group, said in a statement. "Today's ruling of the German Federal Patent Court is a decisive victory for NanoString and Bruker and a resounding vindication of NanoString's belief from the outset that these cases are without merit. This ruling is also a win for science and enables a re-leveling of the playing field in the research tools industry in Germany."

Bruker purchased NanoString's assets out of Chapter 11 bankruptcy for $392.6 million this week. NanoString entered bankruptcy in February, in part due to $31 million in damages it was ordered to pay 10x as part of its loss in a US patent dispute involving its GeoMx Digital Spatial Profiler.

In a separate February decision, the European Unified Patent Court (UPC) Court of Appeal overturned a preliminary injunction issued by the UPC Munich local division in September that had prevented NanoString from selling its CosMx SMI products in 16 UPC member countries.

Kristen Cardillo, VP, corporate communication at 10x, said the company believes the '928 patent is valid.

"Two courts in Europe have now found the ‘928 patent at least preliminarily valid and two courts have found otherwise," she said. "We strongly believe that the ‘928 patent, invented by the renowned Dr. George Church at Harvard, is valid and covers important in situ techniques. We are determined to prove that."