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Genetic Technologies Sues 10 Firms for Infringement on a Method to Determine Haplotype

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This story has been updated from a previous version posted May 26 to include information from the court documents.

Australian genetic testing company Genetic Technologies has sued 10 firms, including 454 Life Sciences, for infringing a patent it holds on method to determine haplotype information from non-coding DNA.

The other firms named in the suit, which was filed this week in the US District Court for the District of Colorado, are Agilent, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Eurofins, GlaxoSmithKline, Hologic, Merial, Navigenics, Neogen, and Pfizer.

Genetic Technologies is alleging infringement of its US Patent No. 5,612,179, titled "Intron Sequence Analysis Method for Detection of Adjacent Locus Alleles as Haplotypes."

While the '179 Patent expired on March 9, 2010, Genetic Technologies is entitled to collect damages for past infringement occurring during the term of the patent.

In documents filed with the court, Genetic Technologies gave an example of how it claims 454 has infringed on its patent. In a 2009 study, the GS FLX was used in a resequencing study of genes thought to be involved with type 1 diabetes, including the sequencing of the multi-allelic gene IFIH1. Genetic Technologies claims that the sequencing and subsequent analysis of the non-coding region of that gene infringed at least one claim of the '179 patent.

Genetic Technologies' suit follows a previous suit filed in January against six companies for the infringement of the same patent.

Both suits follow a suit filed in February 2010 against several firms that was concluded last month. The company said it has secured around $14.5 million in licensing revenues since filing that suit.

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