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PerkinElmer Files IP Suit Against MDS, Life Technologies

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) - PerkinElmer this week filed a patent infringement suit against MDS, its MDS Analytcial Technologies business, and Life Technologies alleging infringement of claims in five US patents held by PerkinElmer.

The suit, which was filed earlier this week in the US District Court for the District of Massachusetts, claims that the MDS Analytical Technologies/Life Technologies joint venture is infringing the patents through sales of the JV's QSTAR line of mass spectrometers.

The patents held by PerkinElmer -- US Nos. 5,962,851; 5,652,427; 6,188,066; 6,020,586; 6,011,259 -- cover a multipole ion guide for mass spectrometry and an ion storage time-of-flight mass spectrometer. PerkinElmer claims in the suit that it informed the defendants of the patents on Sep. 2, 2009. It believes the MDS/Life Tech JV is infringing claims in the patents as well as inducing others to infringe those patents through the sale of the QSTAR products.

PerkinElmer has asked the court to declare that the defendants have infringed the patents, to enjoin them from further sales of allegedly infringing products, and to pay treble damages for willful infringement.

This suit follows a recent legal action taken by PerkinElmer in Canada last month seeking to block MDS' pending sale of a joint venture between the two firms to Danaher, as part of Danaher's agreement to buy MDS Analytical Technologies. In a notice of application filed with the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, PerkinElmer seeks alternatives to providing its consent to the sale of the Analytical Technologies business.

At the JP Morgan Healthcare Conference last week, PerkinElmer CEO Robert Friel declined to comment on the dispute, but said that the firm wants its joint venture to stay with MDS and not be "outsourced to Danaher."

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