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Illumina Sues Life Technologies Over Array Sensor Patent

By Edvard Pettersson

Dec. 29 (Bloomberg) -- Illumina Inc., whose genetic analysis tools are used in disease research and drug development, sued Life Technologies Corp. claiming infringement of one of its patents.

Life Technologies’ Ion Personal Genome Machine and Ion OneTouch System infringe Illumina’s patent for a method of “making and decoding of array sensors with microspheres,” Illumina said in a complaint filed Dec. 27 in federal court in San Diego. The company seeks a court order stopping the alleged infringement and unspecified damages.

“Defendants’ infringing acts are willful in that they have knowledge of Illumina’s rights under the ‘431 Patent, but have continued to infringe, and actively induce and contribute to infringement by others,” lawyers for San Diego-based Illumina said in the complaint.

Mauricio Minotta, a spokesman for Carlsbad, California-based Life Technologies, didn’t immediately return a call to his office yesterday seeking comment on the complaint.

Life Technologies said in a Dec. 9 statement that its Ion Personal Genome Machine in June solved Europe’s E. coli outbreak by sequencing the bacteria’s DNA in two hours. The machine is the first of its kind that translates chemical information into digital data, the company said in the release.

The case is Illumina v. Life Technologies, 11-3022, U.S. District Court, Southern District of California (San Diego).

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