Affymetrix, Mondelez, Tyler, Uinta: Intellectual Property

Nov. 7 (Bloomberg) -- Affymetrix Inc. and Life Technologies Corp.’s Navigenics unit didn’t infringe a patent owned by Massachusetts Institute of Technology and E8 Pharmaceuticals LLC over a system to analyze genes, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit said yesterday.

The court, in a one-paragraph decision, said it based its finding on its agreement with the trial judge’s interpretation of a key phrasing of the patent.

The case was filed in federal court in Boston in July 2008 by the school and its licensee, E8 Pharmaceuticals LLC of Cambridge. E8 was founded by two MIT professors, one of which is a named inventor of the disputed patent.

MIT and E8 accused the two companies of infringing patent 6,703,228, which was issued in March 2004.

The patent covered methods and products related to genotyping and DNA. According to court papers, Santa Clara, California-based Affymetrix and MIT had disputed which entity was first to invent the technology covered by the patent. In 2007 the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office said the MIT scientists had invented the technology before Affymetrix.

The lower-court case is E8 Pharmaceuticals LLC v. Affymetrix Inc., 1:08-cv-11132, U.S. District Court, District of Massachusetts (Boston).

The appeal is E8 Pharmaceuticals v. Affymetrix Inc, 13-1046, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (Washington).

Flir’s Raymarine Probed in Navico Fish-Finding Patent Case

The U.S. International Trade Commission said yesterday it will investigate a complaint filed by Norway’s Navico Holding AS in September.

Navico claims Flir System Inc.’s Raymarine unit’s new Dragonfly sonar imaging devices made in China infringe its patents 8,305,840 and 8,300,499. The patents cover a technology that uses solar to locate fish.

In September Navico asked the trade commission to block imports of the allegedly infringing Raymarine products. The commission said in a statement posted on its website yesterday that it would begin the investigation.

Navico also sued Raymarine for infringement in federal court in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Aug. 26 alleging infringement of the same patents.

That case is Navico Inc. v. Raymarine Inc., 4:13-cv-00554, U.S. District Court, Northern District of Oklahoma (Tulsa).

For more patent news, click here.


Mondelez Unit Wins Temporary Order Protecting ‘Choclairs’ Mark

Mondelez International Inc., the Deerfield, Illinois-based food and beverage company, was granted its request that an Indian court bar Lotte Group’s Lotte Confectionery unit’s use of “Choclairs,” Confectionery News reported.

The Illinois company’s Cadbury India unit had claimed Seoul-based Lotte’s use of the term infringed its trademark, according to Confectionery News.

Delhi’s High Court has issued a temporary order barring Lotte from selling products similar to Cadbury’s Choclairs for the duration of the case.

Cadbury rebranded its Eclairs as Cadbury Choclairs in June, and told Confectionery News the company expects to prevail over Lotte.

Tyler Technologies Sued by TexasFile Over Internet Domain Name

Tyler Technologies Inc., a Dallas-based provider of information management services for local governments, was sued for trademark infringement by a company that provides online access to Texas county records.

According to the suit filed Oct. 30 in federal court in Sherman, Texas, TexasFile LLC objects to the “” Internet domain name used by Tyler. TexasFile has used its domain name since 2004, and its TexasFile logo since 2006.

Franco, Texas-based TexasFile says the public is confused by the similarity in the domain names. The confusion will get worse after January 2014, according to the complaint, when electronic court filing goes live in the state of Texas. A number of county websites already link directly to Tyler’s, TexasFile said in its pleadings.

TexasFile asked the court to order Tyler to quit using, and for awards of money damages, including Typer’s profits attributable to the alleged infringement, attorney fees and litigation costs.

Tyler didn’t respond immediately to an e-mail seeking comment on the lawsuit.

The case is TexasFile LLC V. Tyler Technologies Inc., 4:13-cv-00635, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Texas (Sherman).

Vagabond Skor Wins Indian Trademark Dispute With Italian Company

Vagabond Skor Varberg AB, a Swedish manufacturer of shoes and sportswear, has prevailed in a trademark dispute in India against an Italian company with a similar name, India’s Business Standard reported.

The Swedish company’s Indian trademark registration was opposed by Italy’s Vagabond SpA, which claimed it already registered the “Vagabond” mark for clothing in India, according to the Business Standard.

Vagabond Skor argued that the Italian company never used the mark in India, Business Standard reported.

India’s Intellectual Property Appellate Board ruled in the Swedish company’s favor after the Italian company failed to appear for the hearing of file any papers countering Vagabond Skor, according to the newspaper.

Uinta Brewing Changes Beer Name After Notch’s Trademark Claim

Uinta Brewing Co., a specialty brewer based in Salt Lake City, Utah, has agreed to change the name of one of its beers after receiving a request from a Massachusetts brewer, the Brewbound brewery news website reported.

Notch Brewing Co. of Ipswich, Massachusetts, had claimed that Uinta’s “Top Notch” beer was infringing its “Notch” trademark, according to Brewbound.

Uinta said that while it will change the name to “Hop Nosh,” it will retain the label imagery of farmers loading a wagon with hops, Brewbound reported.

The Utah company has also abandoned its pending application for the “Hop Notch” trademark, according to the website.

For more trademark news, click here.

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IP Moves

Ropes & Gray Hires Patent Litigation Andrew N. Thomases

Ropes & Gray LLP hired Andrew N. Thomases for its IP practice group, the Boston-based firm said in a statement.

Thomases was previously a partner at New York’s Skadden Arps Slate Meagher and Flom LLP. He has represented clients in federal trial and appellate courts and before the U.S. International Trade commission.

His clients have included companies with interests in semiconductors, computers, analog circuits, wireless products and medical devices.

Thomases served as a judicial clerk for Judge Raymond Clevenger III of The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, the Washington-based court that hears appeals of patent cases.

He has an undergraduate degree in physics from Amherst College and a law degree from the University of Chicago.

To contact the reporter on this story: Victoria Slind-Flor in Oakland, California, at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at

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