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Enzo Says Court Ruling Enables Claim for 'Substantial Damages' Against Life Technologies

By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (Genomeweb News) – Enzo Biochem today said that a decision by an appellate court last week that reversed a district court's summary judgment enables the firm to pursue a claim for "substantial damages" against Life Technologies.

Enzo said that the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit had vacated the lower court's judgment of invalidity for US Patent Nos. 5,328,824 and 5,449,767.

The patents were part of a suit brought by Enzo and Yale University against Life Technologies' predecessor Applera in 2004 in the US District Court for the District of Connecticut. The suit had alleged that Applera's Applied Biosystems was infringing a series of patents covering methods for modifying, preparing, and labeling nucleotides.

The District court had ruled against Enzo and Yale and granted Applera summary judgment in September 2007. Enzo immediately appealed the decision.

"The Appellate Court's ruling clears the way for us to pursue claims related to the broad scope of the products subject to our patents, and substantially weakens the defense of Applera with respect to their potential liability," Elazar Rabbani, Enzo's chairman and CEO, said in a statement today. "This decision allows us to seek redress in terms of claims for damages."

Enzo noted that the Court of Appeals had affirmed the lower court's ruling on other patents in the case, but said that portion of the ruling "will not affect Enzo's claims against Applera, since Enzo believes that Applera's products are covered by US Patents 5,328,824 and/or 5,449,767."

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