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John Bean’s patent, directed to a chiller for cooling poultry carcasses, issued in 2002. Morris is the only other U.S. poultry chiller manufacturer. Weeks after the patent issued, Morris sent a letter stating that Bean had been contacting Morris’s customers and claiming that the equipment being sold by Morris infringed the patent. That Demand Letter notified Bean that Morris believed the patent to be invalid based on prior art and claimed unfair competition. Bean never responded. Morris continued to sell its chillers. In 2013, Bean requested ex parte reexamination. The Patent Office rejected both claims of the 622 patent as anticipated or obvious. Bean amended the two original claims and added six claims. The Patent Office issued a reexamination certificate under 35 U.S.C. 307 allowing the amended and newly added claims. Bean sued, alleging infringement from the date the reexamination certificate issued. In 2016, the district court granted Morris summary judgment, finding the infringement action barred by laches and equitable estoppel based on the 2002 Demand Letter. The Federal Circuit reversed, noting the Supreme Court holding in SCA Hygiene Products (2017), that laches cannot be asserted as a defense to infringement occurring within the six-year period before the filing of an infringement complaint as prescribed by 35 U.S.C. 286. Tthe allegedly infringing activity for which Bean sought damages started in 2014, and Bean filed its infringement complaint in 2014; SCA Hygiene bars Morris’s laches defense. View "John Bean Technologies Corp. v. Morris & Associates, Inc." on Justia Law

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Droplets’s 115 Patent, describing a system “for delivering interactive links for presenting applications and second information at a client computer from remote sources in a network-configured computer processing system,” was filed in 2009, copending with the application leading to the 838 Patent, filed in 2003. The 838 Patent was copending with the application leading to the 745 Patent, filed in 2000; the 745 Patent was copending with the 917 Provisional, filed in 1999. A Patent Cooperation Treaty application was filed in 2000, and published in 2001. The specification of the 115 Patent includes a priority claim that specifically refers to the 838 Patent and incorporates its disclosure by reference and includes a cross reference to the 917 Provisional. The 115 Patent properly claims priority from the 838 Patent and is entitled to the benefit of the 2003 filing date; the 838 patent is entitled to the benefit of the 917 Provisional's 1999 filing date. The Patent Board found the 115 Patent invalid as obvious under 35 U.S.C. 103, reasoning that it failed to enumerate a priority claim sufficient to avoid fully-invalidating prior art; incorporation by reference is insufficient to satisfy a patentee’s burden of providing notice of the asserted priority date under 35 U.S.C. 120. The Federal Circuit affirmed. Because the 115 Patent expressly claims priority only to an immediately preceding application, and not the preceding provisional application, an earlier-filed reference (international publication with the same specification) invalidated it. View "Droplets, Inc. v. E*Trade Bank" on Justia Law

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In 1995, Raniere assigned all rights in the five patents to GTI. Raniere is not listed on GTI’s incorporation documents as an officer, director, or shareholder. GTI dissolved in 1996. In 2014, Raniere executed a document on behalf of GTI, as its “sole owner,” purportedly transferring the patents to himself. Raniere subsequently sued Microsoft and AT&T for infringement, identifying himself as the patents’ owner. Microsoft moved to dismiss for lack of standing, noting that the PTO’s records indicated that Raniere did not own the patents. Raniere produced documents that, according to the court, failed to indicate that Raniere had an ownership interest in GTI at any time or had the right to assign the patents. Raniere obtained documents from an attorney, showing the GTI shareholders’ consent to a transfer of shares from Raniere’s ex-girlfriend (75% owner of GTI) to Raniere. The documents did not indicate that any transfer was completed and did not establish that Raniere owned the patents. The district court held a hearing, found that Raniere’s testimony contradicted Raniere’s earlier representation that the shares had already been transferred and was “wholly incredible and untruthful,” concluded that Raniere was unlikely to be able to cure the standing defect, dismissed the case, and found that Raniere’s conduct demonstrated “a clear history of delay and contumacious conduct.” The Federal Circuit affirmed the dismissal and a subsequent award of prevailing parties attorney fees and costs, 35 U.S.C. 285. View "Raniere v. Microsoft Corp." on Justia Law

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In 1995, Raniere assigned all rights in the five patents to GTI. Raniere is not listed on GTI’s incorporation documents as an officer, director, or shareholder. GTI dissolved in 1996. In 2014, Raniere executed a document on behalf of GTI, as its “sole owner,” purportedly transferring the patents to himself. Raniere subsequently sued Microsoft and AT&T for infringement, identifying himself as the patents’ owner. Microsoft moved to dismiss for lack of standing, noting that the PTO’s records indicated that Raniere did not own the patents. Raniere produced documents that, according to the court, failed to indicate that Raniere had an ownership interest in GTI at any time or had the right to assign the patents. Raniere obtained documents from an attorney, showing the GTI shareholders’ consent to a transfer of shares from Raniere’s ex-girlfriend (75% owner of GTI) to Raniere. The documents did not indicate that any transfer was completed and did not establish that Raniere owned the patents. The district court held a hearing, found that Raniere’s testimony contradicted Raniere’s earlier representation that the shares had already been transferred and was “wholly incredible and untruthful,” concluded that Raniere was unlikely to be able to cure the standing defect, dismissed the case, and found that Raniere’s conduct demonstrated “a clear history of delay and contumacious conduct.” The Federal Circuit affirmed the dismissal and a subsequent award of prevailing parties attorney fees and costs, 35 U.S.C. 285. View "Raniere v. Microsoft Corp." on Justia Law

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Kamstrup filed a petition for inter partes review of the 559 patent. The Board instituted review, based in part on the Nielsen patent. During trial, Apator attempted to swear behind Nielsen’s effective filing date (March 25, 2010), 18 days before its own effective filing date of April 12 and proffered a declaration in which the inventor, Drachmann, declared he conceived of his invention, an ultrasonic consumption meter, before Nielsen’s effective filing date. Apator further proffered: an email from Drachmann to Tunheim dated February 15, 2010 that the Drachmann Declaration states attached an image file; a March 22, 2010 email to Tunheim that the Drachmann Declaration states attached a presentation; an email from Drachmann to Bjerngaard dated March 22, 2010 that the Drachmann Declaration states attached a file; and several drawings that the Drachmann Declaration states were created between February 15 and March 22, 2010. The Patent Trial and Appeal Board rejected Apator’s attempt to swear behind Nielsen and found the claims anticipated and obvious. The Federal Circuit affirmed. Apator failed to sufficiently corroborate Drachmann’s testimony of conception. None of the emails themselves indicate what file was attached or what such attachment disclosed. View "Apator Miitors ApS v. Kamstrup A/S" on Justia Law

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Kamstrup filed a petition for inter partes review of the 559 patent. The Board instituted review, based in part on the Nielsen patent. During trial, Apator attempted to swear behind Nielsen’s effective filing date (March 25, 2010), 18 days before its own effective filing date of April 12 and proffered a declaration in which the inventor, Drachmann, declared he conceived of his invention, an ultrasonic consumption meter, before Nielsen’s effective filing date. Apator further proffered: an email from Drachmann to Tunheim dated February 15, 2010 that the Drachmann Declaration states attached an image file; a March 22, 2010 email to Tunheim that the Drachmann Declaration states attached a presentation; an email from Drachmann to Bjerngaard dated March 22, 2010 that the Drachmann Declaration states attached a file; and several drawings that the Drachmann Declaration states were created between February 15 and March 22, 2010. The Patent Trial and Appeal Board rejected Apator’s attempt to swear behind Nielsen and found the claims anticipated and obvious. The Federal Circuit affirmed. Apator failed to sufficiently corroborate Drachmann’s testimony of conception. None of the emails themselves indicate what file was attached or what such attachment disclosed. View "Apator Miitors ApS v. Kamstrup A/S" on Justia Law

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Stereochemistry is the study of a molecule’s three-dimensional structure. Stereoisomers are molecules with the same chemical formula and structure but different three-dimensional configurations. Enantiomers, non-superimposable mirror images of one another, often have identical physical properties, such as density and boiling point, but can exhibit different pharmacological properties in the human body. Sumitomo’s 372 patent relates generally to “novel imide compounds and their acid addition salts” that are useful as antipsychotic agents. The patent discloses and claims more than one billion compounds, some of which have stereo and optical isomers. Lurasidone, the (–)-enantiomer of an imide compound covered by the patent, is the active ingredient in Sunovion’s schizophrenia and bipolar depression drug LATUDA®. After Emcure filed Abbreviated New Drug Applications with the FDA, seeking approval to market generic versions of LATUDA®, Sumitomo sued for infringement. The claim construction question centered on what combination of enantiomers claim 14 encompassed. The Federal Circuit rejected Sumitomo’s attempt to “import limitations from the specification into the claim” and affirmed the district court, holding that the patent covers at least the specific orientation depicted in the claim, which is the active pharmaceutical ingredient in each party’s commercial product. View "Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma Co., Ltd. v. Emcure Pharmaceuticals Ltd." on Justia Law

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Stereochemistry is the study of a molecule’s three-dimensional structure. Stereoisomers are molecules with the same chemical formula and structure but different three-dimensional configurations. Enantiomers, non-superimposable mirror images of one another, often have identical physical properties, such as density and boiling point, but can exhibit different pharmacological properties in the human body. Sumitomo’s 372 patent relates generally to “novel imide compounds and their acid addition salts” that are useful as antipsychotic agents. The patent discloses and claims more than one billion compounds, some of which have stereo and optical isomers. Lurasidone, the (–)-enantiomer of an imide compound covered by the patent, is the active ingredient in Sunovion’s schizophrenia and bipolar depression drug LATUDA®. After Emcure filed Abbreviated New Drug Applications with the FDA, seeking approval to market generic versions of LATUDA®, Sumitomo sued for infringement. The claim construction question centered on what combination of enantiomers claim 14 encompassed. The Federal Circuit rejected Sumitomo’s attempt to “import limitations from the specification into the claim” and affirmed the district court, holding that the patent covers at least the specific orientation depicted in the claim, which is the active pharmaceutical ingredient in each party’s commercial product. View "Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma Co., Ltd. v. Emcure Pharmaceuticals Ltd." on Justia Law

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Vanda had an exclusive license to the now-expired 198 patent and owns the 610 patent, relating to treatment of schizophrenia with iloperidone wherein the dosage range is based on the patient’s genotype. Vanda owns the New Drug Application for Fanapt® (iloperidone), an atypical antipsychotic approved by the FDA in 2009 under 21 U.S.C. 355(b) and based on the invention disclosed in the 610 patent, which reduces the side effects, enabling safer treatment of schizophrenia. The 198 and 610 patents are listed in connection with Fanapt® in the FDA’s Approved Drug Products with Therapeutic Equivalence Evaluations, (Orange Book). In 2013, West-Ward filed an Abbreviated New Drug Application (ANDA) seeking approval to commercially manufacture, use, offer to sell, and sell a generic version of Fanapt® for the treatment of schizophrenia (21 U.S.C. 355(j)). At that time, the 610 patent had not yet issued and only the 198 patent was listed in the Orange Book. The ANDA contained a Paragraph IV certification that the 198 patent was invalid and/or would not be infringed by West-Ward. The proposed ANDA label is substantially identical in all material respects to the Fanapt® label. The Federal Circuit affirmed a holding that the 610 patent is infringed and not invalid. View "Vanda Pharmaceuticals, Inc. v. West-Ward Pharmaceuticals International, Ltd." on Justia Law

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Knowles’s patent, entitled “Silicon Condenser Microphone and Manufacturing Method,” generally discloses a silicon condenser microphone apparatus, including a housing for shielding a transducer, used in certain types of hearing aids to protect the transducer from outside interferences. The components of the microphone apparatus (package) may specifically be processed “in panel form” that can be separated later into individual units, so that the invention purportedly improves over the prior art’s “drawbacks associated with manufacturing these housings, such as lead time, cost, and tooling.” Following inter partes reexamination, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board affirmed an examiner’s findings that several claims are unpatentable as anticipated and several claims would have been obvious over various prior art references. The Federal Circuit affirmed, upholding the Board’s claim construction of the term “package” as “a structure consisting of a semiconductor device, a first-level interconnect system, a wiring structure, a second-level interconnection platform, and an enclosure that protects the system and provides the mechanical platform for the sublevel.” The Board did not rely upon a new ground of rejection in its motivation to combine analysis. View "Knowles Electronics LLC v. Iancu" on Justia Law