Isis Pharmaceuticals this week was sued by Germany's Tet Systems for allegedly infringing two US patents related to controllable gene expression technology, according to court documents.
Tet's technology involves the use of tetracycline to turn on or off the expression of specific genes at specific times.
According to Tet's suit, Isis allegedly used a cell line, called HepAD38, that contains the entire hepatitis B virus genome under the control of tetracycline prior to the expiration of two patents covering the technology, namely US patent Nos. 5,464,758 and 6,914,124.
Isis did so without "a license or other consent," and included data derived from this use in two of its patent applications, Tet charged in its suit.
"Isis' infringement has been knowing and willful," Tet added.
The suit seeks a declaration of Isis' infringement and an undisclosed award of damages.