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Volcano Loses Patent Countersuit Against St. Jude Medical

Volcano Corp., a maker of cardiac catheter devices, lost a patent case when a jury decided that St. Jude Medical Inc. didn’t misappropriate its inventions.

The jury of five men and three women ruled today after a four-day trial in federal court in Wilmington, Delaware, that the three Volcano patents in the case weren’t infringed by St. Jude.

“We have always preferred to compete in the marketplace with our innovative products, rather than in a courtroom,” Scott Huennekens, Volcano’s chief executive officer, said in a statement. “However, St. Jude Medical continues to take aggressive legal action.”

Amy Jo Meyer, a spokeswoman for St. Paul, Minnesota-based St. Jude, said the company isn’t commenting on the case.

St. Jude initially sued San Diego-based Volcano in July 2010, alleging violation of patents for wires threaded through blood vessels for diagnosis of heart disease. Volcano countersued, pursuing claims over three patents against St. Jude.

After a trial that began Oct. 15, another jury decided Volcano didn’t infringe two St. Jude patents and that two others were invalid, according to a Volcano filing. Trial on Volcano’s claims began Oct. 22 with a new jury.

Volcano also said today that St. Jude agreed that previous versions of a pressure-sensing guide wire infringed a Volcano patent. A trial on damages hasn’t been scheduled.

Volcano fell 27 cents to $28.73 today in New York trading. St. Jude declined $1.44, or 3.6 percent, to $38.27.

The original case is St. Jude Medical v. Volcano Corp., 10-cv-631, U.S. District Court, District of Delaware (Wilmington).

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